Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Finishes Tenth at Miller Tooele, Utah m- The Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team finished 10th for the final round of the Grand American Rolex Series presented by Crown Royal Reserve run at Miller...
Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Finishes Tenth at Miller
Tooele, Utah m- The Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team finished 10th for the final round of the Grand American Rolex Series presented by Crown Royal Reserve run at Miller Motorsport Park today.
Mike Rockenfeller started the number 23/Ruby Tuesday/Alex Job Racing/Porsche Crawford from his second place qualifying position and was able to rocket to the lead by the first turn. What became a drag race down the long Miller front straight was won by the young German Porsche factory driver. Rockenfeller proceeded to pace the field his entire first stint before pitting. On the pit stop a slow fuel hose moved Rockenfeller back to third. He was able to make his way back up to second place before turning over to Terry Borcheller.
Borcheller was also shuffled back to third during the pit stops but was able to pass for second and run fast consistent lap times in his hunt to retake the lead. On lap 63 Brocheller turned the car over to Ralf Kelleners who rejoined the race in third. About five hours into the race Kelleners reported a left rear vibration. The German pitted the Alex Job Racing prepared Porsche Powered Crawford on lap 97 and the team replaced the left rear upper control arm costing them four laps. When Kelleners returned to the battle he was in 17th position.
Borcheller and Rockenfeller negotiated the final stints under dirty track conditions and from dusk to darkness. The Ruby Tuesday duo were able to makeup a lap and drive the car back to a top ten finish. The race went the full nine-hour distance with only one caution period.
Mike Rockenfeller was able to lead for more than an hour on the day. "I got to the power down at the start a little earlier than the 01 car and was able to lead. I fully expected him to drive by me down the straight on the second lap, but I think they went to a higher downforce setup for the race so I was able to keep a little gap. In my first pit stop we lost a little time fueling and I dropped back to second. We had a top car and it was really running great until our suspension problem."
Ralf Kelleners was pleased with his time behind the wheel. "I was finally able to get used to the car and find a rhythm around the track. In practice I had brief stints behind the wheel and really wasn't that comfortable. I was going across the infield and it felt like the wheel had come loose, usually when you get that feeling the wheel comes off a few corners later, but it didn't and I knew then that it was a suspension problem. We looked very good early, but our suspension problem interrupted our day."
Terry Borcheller had a good run up toward the front of the field.J"It was great to be in competitive equipment and to run upfront again. My second stint was really busy with cars going everywhere and a lot of dust and dirt on the track. We really looked great in the lead, Mike had a phenomenal start. It was a tough break with the upper control arm, but it really makes you feel good to be in a car that you could drive just about anywhere on the track to pass people."
"Mike had a great run at the front of the field early in the race," said Alex Job, team owner. "He was able to take the lead and run comfortably out front for his double stint. Terry was able to take up the task and run in second and Ralf did a great job behind the wheel as well. The control arm issue is just one of those things. After we made the repair we went out and made up as much ground as we could. It was a disappointing finish to a real up-and-down year for our Ruby Tuesday Team."