Phoenix: Fernandez Racing Thursday report

Lowe's Fernandez Racing Fourth on Opening Day of Practice at Phoenix The Lowe's Fernandez Racing Pontiac Riley clocked the fourth-fastest lap in the opening day of practice yesterday for Saturday night's Grand American Rolex Series Gainsco Grand...

Lowe's Fernandez Racing Fourth on Opening Day of Practice at Phoenix

The Lowe's Fernandez Racing Pontiac Riley clocked the fourth-fastest lap in the opening day of practice yesterday for Saturday night's Grand American Rolex Series Gainsco Grand Prix at Phoenix International Raceway.

Local resident Adrian Fernandez turned a fast lap of 58.001 seconds (an average of 93.723 mph) in 100-degree heat during the 90-minute afternoon session. Only three cars bested that effort all day, including last week's Laguna Seca race-winning Pontiac Riley of Wayne Taylor and Jan Magnussen. Fernandez and co-driver, Mario Haberfeld, logged 56 trouble-free practice laps on the day.

Practice resumes at 1 p.m. local time (4 p.m. EDT) today with the Daytona Prototype-class qualifying race set for 7:45 p.m. local time (10:45 p.m. EDT). Race time Saturday is 7 p.m. local time (10 p.m. EDT) with SPEED-TV's tape-delayed coverage set for 3 p.m. EDT Sunday.

Adrian Fernandez: "P3 in the opening session [and fourth overall] is always a good way to start your weekend. We did it on fresh tires, like everybody else, and that should be a true indication of how we stack up against everybody else here. That time stood up for the rest of the day. We ran the same set of tires for the entire day and night session. That was a good call because we'll need to save all the sets we can for the rest of the weekend. Overall, I'm very happy with how things are going."

Mario Haberfeld: "I think we're quite strong right out of the box. I felt like I could pass just about everybody around me today. Obviously, on such a tight track and so many cars out there, the race on Saturday night is going to be all about patience. But it's good to know you're as strong, if not stronger, than all the people you've run with. It was incredibly hot out there, but we feel pretty good in the car with our cool suits on. It might be worse for the team in the pits! We learned last week at Laguna Seca that we have to do everything we can to qualify up front, because that's by far the best place to be during the race. We're trying harder than ever to put our Lowe's car up front for the race."

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Mario Haberfeld , Adrian Fernandez , Wayne Taylor