SCC: Laguna Seca: Kensai/Compass360 preview

KENSAI/COMPASS360 READY FOR LAGUNA/LIME ROCK SWING Toronto, Canada -- Three short weeks after returning from Iowa Speedway, the Kensai Racing with Compass360 Acuras headed west for the long haul from Toronto to Monterey, California. Engines have...

KENSAI/COMPASS360 READY FOR LAGUNA/LIME ROCK SWING

Toronto, Canada -- Three short weeks after returning from Iowa Speedway, the Kensai Racing with Compass360 Acuras headed west for the long haul from Toronto to Monterey, California. Engines have been re-built, gearboxes freshened, driveshafts replaced and suspensions adjusted in anticipation of two tracks the drivers of their three cars simply love.

Billy Johnson, who co-drives the #76 TSX with Karl Thomson, calls Laguna Seca home. He's a staff instructor with Skip Barber, and thinks the team's Acuras are ready for another win. "I was leading the KONI race here last year in the team's RSX-S before a GS-class car ran me off the track (we finished fourth)," remarked Johnson. "We've proven the RSX is competitive, and so far this season our TSXs have also been quick, so we're confident that our cars will be able to run up front." The team is hoping to continue their championship run, with Johnson and Thomson currently in second place, just three points behind the Turner BMW of Hopwood and Burrows.

Thomson noted: "This is Billy's home track and he was simply awesome last year. Billy's a true professional and his work with all of our drivers with the data is invaluable. I love Laguna and think the improvements that have been made to the circuit over the past year will suit our Acuras. We have a great driver line-up and the team has made some changes to the cars that we hope will improve reliability."

Thomson continued, "I had a great run in the RSX-S at Lime Rock in 2006, qualifying fourth, which was my best qualifying at the time in KONI Challenge. The field will be very tight but I think we have the opportunity to put all three cars into the top ten. That's our goal over the next two races!"

SPEED World Challenge star Taz Harvey will be joining Beau Buisson in the team's #75 car, replacing Travis Walker who has been hired by Blackforest Motorsports to drive their GS-class #5 Mustang with Valerie Limoges.

Eric Powell returns to the Kensai/Compass360 team after his first run with them at Daytona this year. He'll again be paired with Matt Pritiko, the London, Ontario driver who has continued to impress during his first season in the KONI Challenge. Matt ran in fourth position at the Iowa event before handing off to his co-driver. "We're expecting Matt's progress to continue," noted Crew Chief Ray Lee. "He's shown great maturity at each event and has focussed on improving his performance. I think the Iowa event showed how far he's come."

This coming weekend is the second of three back-to-back weekends on the KONI schedule, which are challenging for the team and drivers (especially considering that the crew needs to cross the continent in less than a week's time!). Team sponsor Skunk2, based in southern California, is providing a home base for the Kensai/Compass360 team, including technical support and crew for the Laguna event. The team is hoping a number of fans will visit their "west coast home" at Laguna Seca and cheer them on.

-credit: kr/compass360

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Beau Buisson , Taz Harvey , Skip Barber , Valérie Limoges , Karl Thomson , Billy Johnson , Travis Walker , Eric Powell