Phoenix: Craig Stanton - Synergy Racing interview

Synergy More Than a Name for Craig Stanton's Rolex Series Championship Pursuit Points leader enters this weekend's Phoenix International Raceway event determined LONG BEACH, Calif. (September 6, 2005) -- Craig Stanton leaves little to chance...

Synergy More Than a Name for Craig Stanton's Rolex Series Championship Pursuit

Points leader enters this weekend's Phoenix International Raceway event determined

LONG BEACH, Calif. (September 6, 2005) -- Craig Stanton leaves little to chance when he approaches anything he does. The Long Beach, Calif.-resident looks at every angle and draws from a variety of places to give himself the best opportunity to win. Stanton, driver of the Synergy Racing No. 80 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup entry, knows that the whole must be greater than the sum of its parts to succeed. It takes synergy. It all came together in 2004 when Stanton was able to win the Grand-Am Cup championship--his first professional sports car racing title. And now, entering this weekend's Rolex Sports Car Series race at Phoenix International Raceway, it is paying off again as Stanton leads the GT class title chase by 21 points with four events remaining.

"The competition is so tight in the Rolex Series that you can't let anything fall through the cracks," remarked Stanton. "Everything I do is aimed at winning this championship. Every morning I get up I am thinking about what I have to do to make sure that the No. 80 is still on top at the end of the season. I go to bed every night doing the same thing. It's all about the championship."

A major part of covering all of his bases is Stanton's unbelievable training routine. The California-native, who shares the No. 80 with longtime co-driver David Murry of Atlanta, Ga., is well known for his physical fitness regime. The 2004 Porsche Cup runner-up dedicates more than 25 hours to training each week, splitting his time between cardiovascular exercise and weight training with mental exercises and karting. While his conditioning is on par with any Olympian or triathlete, Stanton's focus is on performing better in the car not winning a gold medal. The training miles could mean the difference between the championship and second place.

"I believe that the better physically fit you can be, the better decisions you can make," offered Stanton when asked about the importance of fitness in racing. "As you get physically tired, you become more mentally tired as well. If you are mentally tired, you can't react to what the car wants quickly enough. Being physically fit allows you to be mentally sharp in the car. It's pretty easy for me to stay motivated in training because I know every extra mile, every extra rep I put in, could mean the difference between winning this title or not. That draws a lot of extra energy out of you. That helps you push that extra mile on the bike."

Challenging for the championship also required finding the right team, which he found when Virginia's Synergy Racing called after last year's Grand-Am Cup championship. The right car was a natural for Stanton who considers Porsche's 911 the ultimate GT ride. Murry was already associated with Synergy and the team's No. 81 GT program with Mae Van Wijk, opening the opportunity for the pairing to continue into 2005. All the pieces were in place but it requires a dedication like Stanton's to make sure it gelled into the right combination for results.

"Every part matters whether it is co-driving with David, working with Harry (Haggard, longtime engineer), the Synergy crew's dedication to winning or getting that extra boost from Glyco-Max Performance Drink. Every part is important when you're going after a championship as big as this one."

Synergy is more than the team that Craig Stanton drives for; it's his way of life. It is his way to the 2005 Rolex Series GT title. And the next step in Stanton's quest for the championship takes place at Phoenix International Raceway this weekend with the Phoenix 250. The points leader will seek his first win of the season with Murry in Synergy Racing's No. 80 Porsche during Friday night's Rolex Series GT race at PIR at 7:30 p.m.

-sr-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers David Murry , Craig Stanton