PHOENIX, Friday, April 19, 2002 - Shane Lewis continued his domination of the Grand-Am Cup Street Stock Series at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) today. Driving the ...
PHOENIX, Friday, April 19, 2002 - Shane Lewis continued his domination of the Grand-Am Cup Street Stock Series at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) today. Driving the #43 Orison Marketing - Planet Earth Motorsports Corvette, the former Phoenix resident again set the mark in GSI-class practice with a circuit of 1 minute, 6.705 seconds. The lap fell neatly between the two practice session times he set on Thursday- 1:06.846 in yesterday's first session and a 1:06.186 in the day's second, and cooler session. Lewis is the lead driver of the car with owner Joe Nonnamaker co-driving.
"The car was just awesome again today," offered the Jupiter, Florida resident about the session. "The track was not quite as good as yesterday's last session but it was cooler then and later in the day. The first session yesterday and this one today gives us a better overall feeling for what the race will be like. The 11 car gave us a good run towards the end of the session so we know they will be tough tomorrow in qualifying and the race. Actually, the first five cars are separated by just over a half-second and that is pretty darn close. It should be a lot of fun racing the #43 Orison Marketing - Planet Earth Motorsports Corvette in tomorrow's 250-miler."
Today's feat of maintaining the fast time was made even more impressive due to an engine change in the Corvette following Thursday's run.
"We had an engine problem late in yesterday's second session that dumped a lot of oil out of the motor," said Lewis of the reason behind the engine swap. "We aren't exactly sure what happened but the Planet Earth Motorsports crew did just an awesome job putting this car back together. They gave Joe and I the exact same car we had yesterday. We'll get the car qualified tomorrow and see where we line-up for the afternoon's race. I know this car and this team are capable of winning races and this weekend goes to show that."
Shane Lewis has been racing since 1989. He is the 1998 Professional Sports Car Rising Star award winner and has multiple race wins in the IMSA Supercar and SCCA Pro series. Lewis has American Le Mans Series (ALMS) podium finishes at Silverstone, Nurburgring and last season at Portland. This former Daytona Endurance Champion has driven in 16 24-hour races including two 24 Hours of Le Mans, six 24 Hours of Daytona and six 12 Hours of Sebring. In 2002, he is competing as the lead driver for the #43 Orison Marketing - Planet Earth Corvette Z06 in the GSI-class of the Grand-Am Cup Street Stock Series and as lead pilot of the #45 American Viperacing Dodge Viper in the ALMS GTS-class.