Watkins Glen III: Blackhawk Racing preview

GAINSCO/Blackhawk looks to bounce back at The Glen PHILADELPHIA- The last two races have been a tough haul for Bob Stallings, Alex Gurney and their No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance/Wells Fargo Pontiac Riley. At Mid-Ohio, a promising pole position...

GAINSCO/Blackhawk looks to bounce back at The Glen

PHILADELPHIA- The last two races have been a tough haul for Bob Stallings, Alex Gurney and their No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance/Wells Fargo Pontiac Riley. At Mid-Ohio, a promising pole position went for naught after the power steering failed and two weeks ago under the lights at Phoenix, an engine fire put the GAINSCO Riley in the garage just an hour and 15 minutes into the race.

But a few seconds in the hot seat can't stop Alex, Bob or the momentum the team has built in its six-race Rolex Series career. The GAINSCO crew, ably led by new crew chief Terry Wilbert, has put in a yeoman effort, working long hours to put the No. 99 back in running order in time for this weekend's Rolex Sports Car Series Crown Royal 250 at the Glen at Watkins Glen International in western New York. The team scored its best ever Daytona Prototype finish at the same track last month, as Alex Gurney brought the GAINSCO Riley home second after battling fiercely through the field.

Stallings had much praise for the efforts of his GAINSCO team members back at the shops.

"The fire and resulting damage to our car in Phoenix had me more than a little concerned about making it to the next race on time. Thanks to the untiring efforts of our incredible crew and Terry's outstanding leadership, the GAINSCO/Blackhawk No. 99 car will be at The Glen," Stallings said. "I am really looking forward to this race. The Glen is a fun track to drive and Alex was way fast on the short circuit. The "Boot" will be a new experience for both of us but something tells me we're going to like this track."

Gurney is also looking forward to making a strong run on the storied 3.4 mile road course - and he's confident that the team, along with engineer Kyle Brannan will give the driving duo the tools they need to succeed. "I really appreciate all the work our team has done to get the car back to normal and we can go to The Glen with confidence," Alex said. "Bob and I had a great race there a month ago, it was a thrill to be so competitive and end up in second. We've never driven the long course but we feel very good about the setup we're arriving with and there's no reason why we shouldn't be aiming for another podium."

Alex, Bob and the GAINSCO Auto Insurance team will begin seeking that podium as the Crown Royal 250 weekend, held in conjunction with the inaugural Indy Racing League race at Watkins Glen, kicks off this afternoon with practice beginning at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time. Qualifying is set for 4:40 p.m. Friday, and the 74-lap, two-hour, 45-minute race will go green Saturday at 3 p.m.. Eastern. SPEED Channel will present live, flag-to-flag coverage of the Crown Royal 250 beginning at 3 p.m. Eastern, noon Pacific. Live timing and Web radio coverage of all the exciting Rolex Sports Car Series action will be available at ww.Grand-Am.com.

Blackhawk Motorsports has been committed to excellence in road racing since its formation in 2001. The team campaigns the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Pontiac Riley Daytona Prototype in the 2005 Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series. Owner/driver Bob Stallings captured the 2004 SCCA Formula Atlantic National Championship, while co-driver Alex Gurney - the son of road racing great Dan Gurney - is an open-wheel standout making his first foray into sports car racing. The team is supported by GAINSCO Auto Insurance and Wells Fargo, and proudly partners with Pontiac, Riley Technologies, BBS Wheels, Sparco and Ringers Gloves.

The primary sponsor of the No. 99 Blackhawk Motorsports Daytona Prototype is GAINSCO Auto Insurance, a Dallas, Texas-based auto insurer that distributes policies through a network of independent agents across the Sun Belt. The company is publicly traded on Amex under the symbol GAN. GAINSCO Auto Insurance is a growing company in the automobile insurance industry and is using the racing program to promote its "Are You Driven?" marketing theme that is intended to build brand awareness and advance its distribution strategies. For more information, visit www.GAINSCO.com.

-gbm-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Alex Gurney , Dan Gurney , Bob Stallings