Phoenix: Shane Lewis preview

Shane Lewis Returns to Phoenix Optimistic For Daytona Prototype Success JUPITER, Fla., April 6, 2004 - Jupiter, Florida's Shane Lewis will return to Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) this Saturday for the Grand American Rolex Sports Car...

Shane Lewis Returns to Phoenix Optimistic For Daytona Prototype Success

JUPITER, Fla., April 6, 2004 - Jupiter, Florida's Shane Lewis will return to Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) this Saturday for the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series' third round of 2004. Increasing Lewis' usual optimism this weekend is the amount of progress that the Steve Southard-owned team has made to No. 7 PAP Parts BMW-FABCAR since the season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona in February. The white BMW-powered FABCAR made substantial headway with Lewis behind the wheel at the most recent Rolex Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway (HMS) breaking into the top-five of competition. With further refinements made between the two events, Phoenix could be the meeting point of preparation, hard work and luck for Lewis and the PAP Parts/ Southard Motorsports team.

Lewis, lead driver at Southard Motorsports, lived in Phoenix for several years before moving to Florida. He considers the famous desert facility one of his favorites on the circuit. He has two victories on the 1.5-mile, 11-turn track including an overall victory in the 2001 Grand-Am Cup event and has regularly shined there.

Shane Lewis quotes:

about racing the BMW-FABCAR at Phoenix: "I've had a lot of success in Phoenix. I have won a couple of races there. It's a driver's track but, it takes more than just the driver. Because the track is so short and lap times are so quick, pit stops are real important. The crew, the setup and driver skill all have to be combined to make a winning package everywhere we go, but at Phoenix it is all magnified. Every piece has to be in place to be successful at PIR."

about the anticipated high temperatures: "The heat is going to play a factor even though it's a night race. It's going to be hot inside these Daytona Prototypes. The crew keeps telling me it's a dry heat though. I keep asking them; 'you mean like a sauna?'."

about the progress being made at Southard Motorsports: "I'm really excited about the future here at Southard Motorsports. Steve has really spearheaded this program and gotten the entire crew focused on making the improvements that we need. The entire PAP Parts crew is excited and we are all working in the same direction right now. I believe that Miami was a turning-point for our program. We were fast there. We want to be the team that puts FABCAR and BMW back into victory lane."

Shane Lewis has been racing since 1989 with multiple race wins in Grand-Am sanctioned events, in the IMSA Supercar and SCCA Pro Series and the Historic SportsCar Series. He has starts in ARCA stock car competition, at the Pikes Peak Hill Climb and is a former Daytona Endurance Champion and Formula Ford Festival winner. He has driven in six Rolex 24s and three 24 Hours of Le Mans- leading the race in GT class in 2003. He has two overall and one class-victory at the 24 Hours of Nelson Ledges. Lewis was honored as the 1998 Professional Sports Car Racing Rising Star award winner. Lewis also serves as a test driver and private coach.

For more on Shane Lewis please see www.shanelewis.com. To learn more about Southard Motorsports, please visit www.pap-parts.com or www.autoassets.com.

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Shane Lewis , Steve Southard