VIR: Essex Racing/Finlay qualifying report

ROB FINLAY AND MICHAEL VALIANTE TO START THE VIR 400 FROM THIRD POSITION AS A RESULT OF THE 1st EVER GRAND AM QUALIFYING RACE ALTON, VA (April 22, 2006) -- The Grand American Series ran its first ever qualifying race earlier today at Virginia ...

ROB FINLAY AND MICHAEL VALIANTE TO START THE VIR 400 FROM THIRD POSITION AS A RESULT OF THE 1st EVER GRAND AM QUALIFYING RACE

ALTON, VA (April 22, 2006) -- The Grand American Series ran its first ever qualifying race earlier today at Virginia International Raceway. Michael Valiante, driving the No. 5 Make-A-Wish/Z-Line Designs Ford-powered Crawford Daytona Prototype machine started the 30-minute contest from the fourth position.

With rain falling around the 3.27-mile road circuit, Valiante took the green flag and began to battle with his friend, Michael McDowell for position. With spray coming up from the rear wheels of prototype machines and the slippery track conditions, Valiante wisely decided to settle into the race.

With teammate Rob Finlay looking on, Valiante ran an incredible race giving the No. 5 Finlay Motorsports team their best finish to date. The team's efforts during this first ever qualifying race, will find the popular blue and silver machine starting from the third position for tomorrow's running of the Virginia International Raceway 400.

Quotes:

Rob Finlay "What an exciting race! Michael did a great job out there today and we're very excited to be starting tomorrow's event form the third position. My goal for tomorrow is to stay out of trouble and hand the No. 5 Make-A-Wish/Z-Line Designs machine over to my teammate in a good position."

Michael Valiante "The day went really well for us; the Finlay Motorsports team finished the morning session in the first and second position and would have started the qualifying race there if the decision to start by points was not made. I just decided to take it easy during the race and get a good starting position for tomorrow's main event. I really enjoyed the qualifying race format and look forward to the next one."

-fm-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Michael Valiante , Michael McDowell , Rob Finlay