Andersen Racing's Krohn and Dempsey Finish First and Second In Saturday's F2000 Race at Road Atlanta
BRASELTON, Ga., May 10 - Two Van Diemens prepared by Andersen Racing took the checkered in first and second place, another one was fifth and yet another one finished ninth in Saturday's F2000 Championship Series race at Road Atlanta Motorsports Park.
Anders Krohn posted a 2.643-second victory over Peter Dempsey to lead the way for the Palmetto, Fla.-based team in the 33-car, 18-lap race around the 2.540-mile road course. Doug Prendeville came on strong at the end to finish fifth, while Jonny Baker placed ninth. A fifth Andersen Racing driver, Scott Willard, took fifth in the master's class with a 16th-place finish overall.
Krohn, a 20-year-old rookie from Sandnes, Norway, started second, took the lead from the polesitter, Jordan Taylor, in Turn 6 on lap one, and was never again headed.
Krohn's lead was wiped out by a full-course caution on lap 11 for contact between Brendan Puderbach and Kyle Marcelli in Turn 7. Krohn said the yellow was actually a blessing because it allowed the Hoosier tires to cool on his Van Diemen, which is sponsored by Trallfa Industries, Colosseum Dental and Kruse Smith.
Dempsey gave him a tap in the rear at the restart but Krohn needed no prodding to run the remaining six laps, take the checkered and pad his point lead after winning both rounds at VIRginia International Raceway last month and finishing second here Friday. In addition to the team members on site, he was immediately congratulated via telephone by team co-owner Dan Andersen, who is at his home in New Jersey recuperating from eye surgery.
Unofficially Krohn now has a 75-point advantage in the championship over the driver who finished third on Saturday, Matthew Inge, 202 to 127.
Dempsey, one of Andersen Racing's Star Mazda drivers, got to drive the team's No. 2 F2000 car here this weekend when it became available and he was able to get some gear together faster than RLR/Andersen Racing Firestone Indy Lights driver Andrew Prendeville, who was also on hand and also volunteered to fill in.
As it turned out there were actually two drivers on the podium wearing uniforms that said "Krohn," because Dempsey borrowed a spare suit from Krohn and a helmet and HANS device from the defending F2000 champion, Cole Morgan, in order to compete here. Dempsey, of Ashbourne, County Meath, Ireland, originally planned to just help the crew here and get a look at the track, where he'll race this fall when the Star Mazda series visits here. He pitched in on Friday night to help fix the clutch in the car he drove to the runner-up honors here Saturday.
Dempsey started third and like Krohn, he also passed Taylor on lap one. He ran in second place the rest of the way.
Doug Prendeville of Whippany, N.J. started seventh on Saturday in the No. 5 Van Diemen sponsored by Andersen Racing, Allied Interior Products and Restart Communications. He dropped as low as ninth, ran the majority of the race in eighth place, and then came on like gangbusters in the last four laps to nail down a thrilling top-five finish.
Jonny Baker of Farnham Common, Buckinghamshire, England qualified fifth and was one spot in front of Prendeville during the middle of the race before his Allied Interior Products No. 6 Van Diemen faded to ninth at the end.
Scott Willard of Weston, Conn., worked hard to keep fellow Masters class driver Robert Wright behind his BroadReach Partners No. 14 Saturday. Although Willard dropped to 19th in the early going, he finished right where he started in 16th place overall.
The results of Saturday's race are provisional. Series officials said they didn't expect to issue official results until sometime next week.
Andersen Racing is Van Diemen's factory team in this series. The Palmetto, Fla.-based team is sponsored by Allied Building Products Corp. It is the development team of Rahal Letterman Racing.
The team's Web sites are at andersenracingteam.com and andersenracepark.com. More information on the series is available at eformulacarnews.com and f2000championshipseries.com.
The next F2000 doubleheader is scheduled for June 13-15 at Watkins Glen International in Watkins Glen, N.Y.
Some post-race quotes follow:
Anders Krohn: "Today's start was good. I passed Jordan in Turn 6. The opening laps I drove as hard as I could. I had confidence in my car. I knew I could push it hard, and it was amazing.
"I was glad for the full-course caution. It was a blessing for me. My tires were going off halfway through the race, and the yellow gave me a chance to let them cool off. Before the yellow my lead had been decreasing. It went from 1.4 seconds to under 1 second before the safety car came out.
"I dropped two wheels off at the exit of Turn 7 once before the caution came out, but that was it.
"I strengthened my championship lead. I want to thank Andersen Racing and all of my sponsors. My sponsors gave me the opportunity for this adventure, and Andersen Racing is giving me a car that can win. I'm thrilled!"
Peter Dempsey: "I passed Jordan [Taylor] in 10A and 10B on the first lap, and I had a good race with him. I went across the grass in some corners to stay ahead of him. Then he caught the back of me in Turn 7. I looked to the back and he was gone.
"I hit Anders [Krohn] a bit in the rear under the safety car. I pushed him down the hill to make sure he was ready for the green.
"My car was perfect. I want to thank everyone at Andersen Racing. This was the first time I've ever driven here, and the first time I've driven a F2000 car. This is an '08 Van Diemen, and I have to say they did a great job designing this car. Our Hoosier tires worked to perfection too.
"I also have to thank Anders for the suit, and Cole Morgan for loaning me a helmet and a HANS device.
"They told me to bring the car home in one piece and get some laps in here. I did!"
Doug Prendeville: "It was fun. I'm really happy. I want to thank Steve [Thexton], Corey [Center] and everyone else on the Andersen Racing team who worked extremely hard and put in very late hours to get my car ready for this weekend after the crash at VIR. They did a complete rebuild, and you couldn't tell any difference in the car this weekend from how it was before the crash at VIR.
"I was able to pick up some spots due to some other people's mistakes. My car handled fine, and it was a good result. The Restart Communications people were thrilled when we were able to move up to fifth at the end."
Jonny Baker: "First off the race was pretty good. I had a little moment where my car popped out of gear in Turn 1, but it popped back in and it was handling well.
"After the safety car the car was still handling great, but for some reason it lost straight-line speed. We'll look at the data and the video and try to determine what happened so we can fix it.
"On the last lap Tim Minor drafted by me. I was trying to maintain my position and I braked late. Luckily for me he avoided me. I had to take a chance on the last corner, and fortunately it worked out. That was my closest call, but there was no contact. It was very close on a couple occasions and my car may have a couple scrapes, but no real contact.
"I see no reason why we can't be challenging for the win at Watkins Glen."