Kansas City, Kan. - Locked into a battle for the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series championship, Stevenson Motorsports will start the SFP Grand Prix from fourth on the grid after American John Edwards posted a fast lap time of 1:15.528-seconds in the No. 57 Stevenson Automotive Camaro GT.R. Edwards will open the 2 hour, forty-five minute race from behind the wheel before turning the car over to Robin Liddell to take to the finish.
"That was much better than we expected,” said team manager Mike Johnson. “The car got faster every lap and John was just driving the wheels off of the thing. I don't think anyone anticipated us going that fast.
I think this might give us a little bit of false hope for tomorrow, but we are really going to have to put together a good race tomorrow. The team has been working really hard to make progress, but I still think it is going to be a struggle for us tomorrow."
After a finish of eighth last weekend at Road America, the team will look for a return to the GRAND-AM podium as the series stages its first-ever race on the combination oval/road course circuit.
"The car was as good as we have had it all weekend,” said Edwards. “Quite frankly I think it is almost as good as we can get it. There are some little tiny things, but I think we are definitely in the window for the handling in the car and unfortunately our best for this car is about six 10ths off of what Ferrari can do. That is a bad sign for our race tomorrow. When the second drivers get in I think we are going to have a hard time."
With his times improving all the way through the end of the session, Edwards kept finding more speed every lap.
"I think that is kind of the nature of this tire especially in the cool conditions,” said Edwards. “We are on the 'I tire' that is made to support a heavier load in the banking. I think it takes more laps, especially in cool conditions to get the heat and pressure into that tire, and I think that is mostly expected.
It is nice for us to see that there is not a big difference between new tires and old tires. I don't think we are really going to struggle over a stint, but then again, neither is anyone else really. I don't know if that is a big advantage for our car or if that is just the nature of the tire."