Sears Point: Krohn Racing preview

Krohn Racing has some changes in store for this weekend at the Infineon Raceway/Sears Point, as the team adds a new driver to substitute for the suspended Colin Braun. Former Formula One racer, Ricardo Zonta, will replace Braun in the No. 75...

Krohn Racing has some changes in store for this weekend at the Infineon Raceway/Sears Point, as the team adds a new driver to substitute for the suspended Colin Braun. Former Formula One racer, Ricardo Zonta, will replace Braun in the No. 75 Krohn Racing Pontiac Riley for Saturday's 400-kilometer race, teaming with Nic Jonsson. Team owner/driver Tracy Krohn and Max Papis will again be paired in the No. 76 Krohn Racing Pontiac Riley.

It is the penultimate round of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series, Round 13 of 14, at the beautiful 2.52-mile northern California circuit, as the season winds to a close. The season finale will be held at Miller Motorsports Circuit, the Sunchaser 1000 race on September 15th.

Tracy W. Krohn, team owner/driver, No. 76 Krohn Racing Pontiac Riley:

HOW DO YOU LIKE THE INFINEON RACEWAY CIRCUIT?

"This is a fabulous circuit. It is a real race track. This is a great road course and has been for many, many years. It's a great location. Everyone likes coming to Sonoma.

What are your thoughts as we head into the penultimate race of the season?

"With two races left we really have to put our heads down to stay involved in the Team Championship. Obviously, we're not going to win the Driver's Championship because of Colin's suspension. We need to stay focused and try to have as good of results as we can for the team."

Max Papis, driver, No. 75 Krohn Racing Pontiac Riley:

How do you like the Infineon Raceway circuit?

"I think it is one of the best, and one of my top three favorite race tracks in the United States. It is an awesome track and it's good to be here in California. It always makes for good racing. There are going to be a lot of race fans that are very knowledgeable. It's good to be teamed up this weekend with the IRL. It is going to bring out even more crowd so I'm excited about that."

It is the penultimate race of the season, your thoughts?

"We started the season with the goal to get the No. 75 car in the Top Five and try to win races. That's still a goal for the other car. For our car, we are in the chase to win the Truman Award for Tracy. I still don't give up the hope to be on the podium before the end of the season with Tracy."

Nic Jonsson, driver, No. 76 Krohn Racing Pontiac Riley:

How do you like the Infineon Raceway circuit?

"I like Infineon Raceway and have had pretty good success here, both in World Challenge and in sports car racing. I think it is a very challenging track. It has a lot of technical parts, so it's very much a driver's track, I believe. It has high speed corners -- like coming down from the top of the hill and some corners are blind coming over some crests and some standing still corners. It pretty much has everything. I believe with the cars we've been developing over the years with Krohn Racing, I think we're going to have a really good car. I'm very, very excited having my new co-driver Ricardo Zonta. I've never raced with him before but he has a fantastic track record and I think it will be great for both myself and for Krohn Racing to have him here as a driver for us this weekend.

You have a new co-driver this weekend. Will you be spending a lot of time mentoring him about Grand-Am racing and the Krohn Pontiac Riley?

"I think a guy like Ricardo has such international experience, I don't think I'll need to do much mentoring, maybe more advising what this car is all about with the tires and so forth. He obviously has the speed. No doubt about that. He's going to learn the track real quickly. He's been running both in Europe and Asia, running a lot of street course where you are forced to learn the track in one or two sessions, so I'm sure he'll be able to do that. I hear he's a very complete driver and I'm very excited having him as my teammate. I think we'll do real well."

Ricardo Zonta, driver, No. 75 Krohn Racing Pontiac Riley:

Tell us about how you feel about joining the Krohn Racing team this weekend.

"For me, it is completely new. I've never raced here in America in a championship and it is also my first time seeing a Grand-Am car. So for me it is completely new. I need to learn a lot -- the circuit the car and try to help out the team as much as I can for the race. So I'm very happy to be invited for this race. It will be very nice for me."

Did you know much about the Krohn Racing team before arriving at the track today?

"I worked with David Brown in Formula One so he invited me to join the team. It looks very good for me because the car is very quick. It is one of the best in the championship and Nic is very quick as well. I can learn a lot from him and being part of the team is very good for me."

What is your goal for the weekend?

"For me, as I don't have much experience in the car, I think most of the job Nic is going to do. I think I just have to learn the car and learn the track and try to not make any mistakes or make any trouble for the team. We will use this weekend for me to learn and try to help to share the car. Nic is very quick and he knows what is best for the car as well, so I will just follow his advice."

Jeff Hazell, Team Manager Krohn Racing:

"It should be a perfect weekend of racing. The track is a good driver's track and it's nice to have a new driver on the team for a change. It's just a shame Colin couldn't race here. I don't see any reason why we shouldn't chalk up our first win here.

The Krohn Racing team continues in fourth place in the Rolex Series Prototype team points chase with the No. 75 entry and 12th place with the No. 76 entry after 12 of 14 races. Braun has five podium finishes, Papis four and Jonsson one. Braun has also captured two pole positions. Krohn has one Top Five and four Top Ten finishes so far this year.

-credit: kr

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