SCC: Daytona: Automatic Racing qualifying notes

Automatic Racing Qualifies on Second Row for Grand-Am Cup 200 at Daytona DAYTONA, Fla.--Twenty-year-old Jeff Segal got the 2006 Grand-Am Cup season off to a good start by qualifying third for Friday's Grand-Am Cup 200 at Daytona International ...

Automatic Racing Qualifies on Second Row for Grand-Am Cup 200 at Daytona

DAYTONA, Fla.--Twenty-year-old Jeff Segal got the 2006 Grand-Am Cup season off to a good start by qualifying third for Friday's Grand-Am Cup 200 at Daytona International Speedway, setting a fast time of 2:02.652 in the No. 90 Automatic Racing BMW M3.

Segal and David Russell will share the driving duties in the BASE Energy Drink-sponsored BMW.

"We found a good hole in traffic, but we didn't find it at the right time," commented Segal, who had just 15 minutes to qualify along with the other 51 Grand Sport class entries.

Segal set his fast time nine minutes into the qualifying session, momentarily claiming the second-quickest time on track. At the checkered flag, Segal's time was fourth-quickest, giving the team a second-row start for the race.

"Our strength is consistency," Segal remarked. "We can't run as fast of a lap in qualifying as some of the other cars, but we can run fast laps throughout the race. And the car is running well and handles great through the infield."

The No. 09 Automatic Racing/Skinny Cow Milk BMW M3 of Jep Thornton and Matt Mullins did not fare as well, after problems with the differential developed early in the qualifying session. Mullins took the car on track but was able to make just one complete lap.

"We knew going out that there was a potential problem," said Mullins. "We ran it and had some clear track. It felt like a decent car, but then it just lost all the drive. The good news is that this didn't happen in the race."

The Automatic Racing crew got to work replacing the differential on the No. 09 BMW, while Mullins is preparing to start 76th on the grid.

The No. 91 BMW M3 qualified 25th after Emil Assentato set his quick time of 2:04.533. Dave Riddle followed in 31st with a quick time of 2:04.856 in the No. 99 BMW M3.

The Grand-Am Cup 200 will begin on Friday, January 27 at 2:15 p.m.

-www.AutomaticRacing.com.

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Emil Assentato , Jep Thornton , Jeff Segal , Dave Riddle , Matt Mullins , David Russell
Teams Automatic Racing