Braselton, Georgia (September 22-24, 2004) - Brian Frisselle (Kihei, HI), driver of the Ventura Travel Services ...
Braselton, Georgia (September 22-24, 2004) - Brian Frisselle (Kihei, HI), driver of the Ventura Travel Services #15 machine for G&W Motorsports, competed in Round Eight of the 2004 Star Mazda Series North American Championship presented by Goodyear this weekend at Road Atlanta as part of the Petit le Mans weekend activities. The young rookie from Hawaii was off to a good start in Wednesday's practices, running 8th and 6th fastest respectively. Frisselle started strong in Thursday's morning practice, posting a 1:20.732 lap time which placed him 4th fastest in a field of 30 drivers. The afternoon's qualifying session was a success as well, as the young talent from Kihei executed a 1:20.463 lap time around the 2.54 mile 12 turn grand prix course, earning a P6 starting position for Friday's race.
"Qualifying went pretty well," Frisselle commented. "I posted a very quick lap about three quarters of the way through the session which placed me in P4 at the time. From there, I had a couple of slower laps and had a radio miscommunication with my team, which resulted in me bringing the car in for the remainder of the session. The end result was a P6 qualifying position, which was disappointing because I feel that I could have posted some faster laps before the checkered flag. However, it's great to be up in the front and I know that we are competitive, so I look forward to a great race tomorrow!"
Frisselle had an excellent start in Saturday's race, immediately gaining two positions and moving into P4. The young talent from Hawaii executed a pass for 3rd going into the final chicane and was then hit from behind by the overtaken car, which caused damage to Frisselle's #15 Ventura Travel Services sponsored machine. A yellow flag brought the field together, and following the restart Frisselle lost a few positions, falling back to 7th position as his car became increasingly loose. The young talent from Kihei adjusted well to his damaged machine and made an impressive run up to 5th position. Frisselle engaged in an intense battle with the #70 car, running nose to tail while clocking lap times as fast as the cars running in P3 and P4. On the final lap of the race, young Frisselle got a good run through turn seven which allowed him to overcome the P4 car in turn ten. However, when two competitors ahead of Frisselle made contact as they entered the chicane, one of the cars was sent spinning into Frisselle's rear. The rear wing of the #15 machine was torn off, but Frisselle was able to bring the car across the finish line to finish in 6th place.
"Overall I am very pleased with my race," Frisselle stated. "The first lap contact was unfortunate because my team, G&W Motorsports, had prepared a podium car and we were confident that we would be competitive. But I was happy to be able to take a damaged car up to P4 before I was caught up in the incident on the last lap. We are definitely looking forward to Laguna, as we have been quick at the last two races and feel confident that we can put everything together and challenge for a win."
Round Nine of the Star Mazda Series North American Championship presented by Goodyear will be held at Phoenix International Raceway October 1-2, 2004. Round Eight from Road Atlanta will be televised by SPEED Channel on Sunday, October 10th at 12:00 PM ET.
G&W Motorsports, based at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Virginia, made its open-wheel racing debut at the 2004 Pro Formula Mazda Series Championship opener at Sebring International Raceway. After achieving several victories, as well as many championships, in sports car racing, G&W Motorsports is planning to continue its success in the Pro Formula Mazda Series.