Andersen Racing's Krohn and Baker Are in a Class of Their Own Saturday In F2000 Season Opener at VIR ALTON, Va., April 19 - After Andersen Racing's Jonny Baker beat his teammate, Anders Krohn, in qualifying on Saturday morning, Krohn got the...
Andersen Racing's Krohn and Baker Are in a Class of Their Own Saturday In F2000 Season Opener at VIR
ALTON, Va., April 19 - After Andersen Racing's Jonny Baker beat his teammate, Anders Krohn, in qualifying on Saturday morning, Krohn got the upper hand and beat Baker in the F2000 Championship Series season-opening race Saturday afternoon at VIRginia International Raceway.
Both got a great start but Krohn applied his brakes a split-second later than Baker did going into Turn 1 on the first lap to get around Baker on the outside. It turned out to be the winning move. Although Baker set the fastest lap of the race with a 1:56.636 (100.929 miles per hour), Krohn had a 1.644-second advantage over his teammate at the checkered flag.
Both are series rookies. Krohn, of Sandnes, Norway, carries the colors of Trallfa Industries, Colosseum Dental, and Kruse Smith on his Hoosier-shod No. 9 Van Diemen. Baker, of Farnham Common, Buckinghamshire, England, touts the team's sponsor, Allied Interior Products, on the sidepods of his No. 6 that was built by the same car manufacturer. Andersen Racing is Van Diemen's factory team in this series.
After Krohn passed Baker at the front of the field, trouble developed behind the top pair in the form of a six-car accident in Turn 1 on that same first lap to bring out a full-course yellow. The green waved again on lap three and the rest of the 30-minute, 11-lap race went non-stop.
The three other Andersen Racing drivers in the race, Ricardo Vassmer, Doug Prendeville and Scott Willard, made it through that tussle unscathed. Prendeville, of Whippany, N.J., who started tenth, advanced to seventh with his Allied Interior Products/Restart Communications No. 5. Vassmer, of Caracas, Venezuela and Coral Springs, Fla., started eighth but was still ninth for the restart with his PDVSA, Citgo, Zoom and Meridian No. 2.
Unfortunately Vassmer lost several spots on the restart due to another driver's mistake, and he ended up 11th in the final rundown. Prendeville had an even rougher trip, as the front wing of his No. 5 was crumpled after an altercation in the esses on lap three. He persevered for three more laps before he brought his car back onto pit road and parked it for the day.
Willard, of Weston, Conn., finished where he started, 20th. His BroadReach Partners No. 14 was embroiled in several battles throughout the race, however.
The race started 35 minutes late due to other classes' sessions running longer than planned. Although radar showed rain headed directly for the area, it held off and the only sprinkles occurred while the champagne corks popped in victory lane.
The F2000 schedule features seven doubleheader weekends, so its next race is tomorrow at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time at VIR preceded by qualifying at 12:15 p.m. Scattered showers are predicted once again.
The following two races will be held at Road Atlanta on Friday, May 9 and Saturday, May 10.
Andersen Racing 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 f2000championshi pseries.com.
Some post-race quotes follow:
Anders Krohn: "I didn't come here expecting to be so quickly on the pace. The testing we did really helped, and the Andersen Racing crew is working flat out.
"On the opening laps I was pushing really hard, and then I just tried to maintain my lead. I'm really stoked!
"There's always more that you can do to improve though. We'll go over the data and see where we can go faster. Tomorrow we'll have to push hard or even harder.
"In the beginning the car was loose, but after a few laps it was pushing. I liked that better than the rear end sliding around.
"At the start of the race I was pushing as hard as I could. I tried to brake as late as I could, and I got by Jonny on the outside going into Turn 1.
"I'm really glad the rain held off. When we were going around behind the safety car, I was looking at the clouds and hoping it wouldn't rain. Luckily it held off. I'm really happy!"
Jonny Baker: "I thought I had a good start, but he got me on the start on t he outside. It was a really good move. Anders was just a bit better on cold tires than I was.
"I stiffened the bar once and that helped, but the gap was pretty much started by that point. I was taking a couple of tenths out of him at the end, but the gap was too big. I'll make a harder job for him tomorrow.
"I'm really happy with second for the points, but you know how it is; there's one better spot. But the car is in one piece and there's another race tomorrow. I think Anders and I were in a league of our own out there today, so it should be a fun year."
Ricardo Vassmer: "The balance of the car was good. I had a good restart. Then some driver in front of me slammed on the brakes on the straightaway and it cost me a lot of positions. I just wanted points, and I finished. I didn't have any contact with anyone."
Doug Prendeville: "I had a good start. The damage happened going into the bottom of the esses the lap of the restart. I drove it for a few more laps, and then I brought it in. I may have blown up the engine too; I don't know yet."