Sebring: Velocity Motorsports preview

Prospect Hill, N.C. - The Velocity Motorsports team is set for the first Star Mazda race of the season after completing a successful two car test at Road Atlanta. The team was joined by 2005 Star Mazda Masters Series Champion, John Pew, and young...

Prospect Hill, N.C. - The Velocity Motorsports team is set for the first Star Mazda race of the season after completing a successful two car test at Road Atlanta. The team was joined by 2005 Star Mazda Masters Series Champion, John Pew, and young gun Logan Gomez. The team and drivers worked on car setups and the drivers got plenty of seat time over the two day test. There was not one hiccup during the test. The team which is very optimistic for the 2006 season is looking forward to the arrival of their third driver, Mark Patterson, who with Ozz Negri was competing in the Rolex Sports Car Series race in Mexico City.

Team Quotes

Ken Erb, Team Principal

"John's experience in the car and with tracks he knows shows in his consistent driving. Right out of the gate he was laying down times that were competitive with what he had run at Road Atlanta in the past. We used a good part of the day with him to work on different types of setups to develop different techniques. Although it will be difficult, considering the times John ran at the test at Sebring in January, the team has set a goal for him to finish in the top ten."

"Logan continues to impress me with his maturity. There is no way you would know that he is only seventeen by his approach to testing. While other "young guns" are out there spinning and crashing in an effort to run fast lap times, Logan takes his time by slowly working up to what were some of the fastest times of the test event. Then he is able to consistently run just about the identical time lap after lap. He might be somewhat behind some of the other competitors in seat time in cars, however, he has covered quite a bit of ground in his two test events. There is no question that there is going to be tough competition, however, I know Logan gives us a legitimate chance to run at the front. I fully expect to be on the podium several times this year and even to win a race or two."

"Even though Russ Gaglio has been with the team for about a month, his first track event with Velocity Motorsports was at Road Atlanta. Russ is a seasoned veteran of the Star Mazda series, working with several Championship winning teams including Worldspeed, the Star Mazda factory team and last year with MJ Motorsports. Additionally he has worked with successful drivers like Scott Speed, Michael McDowell and Marco Andretti. His prior experience and skill will be a definite advantage as Logan's lead mechanic."

Ian Macpherson, Team Engineer

"Since we will not be racing at Road Atlanta until September, we chose to concentrate on trying a number of setup options looking for relative improvements rather than obsolete lap times."

"John ran a constructive program of changes, ultimately finding a configuration that we look forward to trying in a race situation for him. John's defense of his Masters title begins on a high note next week."

"Logan spent only his 3rd and 4th days in a pro Mazda this week and, after a tentative start, ultimately turned in a 1:19.8, in what we believe to be one of the fastest times of the two day test. He worked progressively through a number of configurations, providing constructive feedback each time. We are heading to Sebring very optimistic about his chances of surprising the regulars."

John Pew, Driver Star-Mazda #15

"The team had a great two day test experimenting with car setups. We already had some valuable car setups from the last race at Road Atlanta. Plus, with poor track conditions, we were able to post faster times than in the fall. I am very hopeful for a great event at Sebring because it is my home track and I am very comfortable there. I have a great feeling about the upcoming season as I look forward to defending my Masters Series Championship and to placing overall in the top ten in points. I would like to thank the Velocity Motorsports team, my sponsor NVG Residential, and my personal driver coach, Ozz Negri.

Logan Gomez, Driver Star-Mazda #23

"My goal the first day was to get acquainted with the car on a new track. After several sessions I began to get acclimated to the track's elevation change and braking zones. We also ran through a variety of car setups so that I would be comfortable with them prior to the first race. On the second day I worked on my entry and exit speeds in the corners. The team helped me by freeing up the rear of the car to enable it to drive more like a kart, which I am used to driving. This enabled me to drive the car deeper into the corners and work on out braking other cars. The team is well prepared for the Sebring race. I hope to gain a top five finish in the race. I would like to thank the Velocity Motorsports team, Helix In Car Cameras, my teammate, John Pew, for his support and my mom & dad for giving me this opportunity to race.

The team begins official practice for the first race of the year on Wednesday, March 15th .The race will be on Friday, March 17th ,and will be televised on SPEED Channel on Sunday, April 9th, at 4:00pm Eastern time.

-vm

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About this article
Series Pro Mazda
Drivers Michael McDowell , Scott Speed , Marco Andretti , John Pew , Mark Patterson , Logan Gomez