HORSES FOR COURSES -- ENGLISHMAN KENT TAKES POLE IN ENGLISH WEATHER FOR THIS AFTERNOON'S ROUND 11 OF THE 2009 STAR MAZDA CHAMPIONSHIP AT MOSPORT Mosport International (August 29, 2009) -- Under conditions of fog and light rain that reminded him...
HORSES FOR COURSES -- ENGLISHMAN KENT TAKES POLE IN ENGLISH WEATHER FOR THIS AFTERNOON'S ROUND 11 OF THE 2009 STAR MAZDA CHAMPIONSHIP AT MOSPORT
Mosport International (August 29, 2009) -- Under conditions of fog and light rain that reminded him very much of racing at home... 'but warmer'... Englishman Richard Kent took his fourth pole of the season in this morning's qualifying for this afternoon's Round 11 of the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear at the Mobil 1 Presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. On a damp but drying track, Kent set the pole time of 1:24.186 (105.153 mph) in his #33 Andersen Racing / Traka Allied Interior Products Mazda. Kent, currently 8th in the championship battle with a win from the pole at Race 2 at New Jersey Motorsports park, has also started on the inside of the front row at the Sebring season-opener (finished 2nd), the Milwaukee Mile oval (finished 20th).
"There were two red flags in the first two laps, which both made you cautions and made you realize that you had to put a fast lap in early in case something happened and the session ended," said Kent. "Toward the end of the session the track was drying a bit and there was a dry line most of the way around, but there wasn't time to experiment with dry tires. Being on pole at any track, particularly one like Mosport is important, but that said, there's a tremendously long back straight where anyone can tow behind you and pass going into Turn 6. But we've got a car that's good at all the critical portions of so we should be OK for the race."
Kent's was the clear class of the field and the only one in the 24s, as second-place qualifier Conor Daly (the winner in Round 4 at New Jersey), who has raced at this track in the rain last year in the Canadian Formula Ford Series, turned a 1:25.199 (103.903 mph) in the #22 Andersen Racing / College Network / Indeck / Cytomax Mazda. Alex Ardoin, winner of Round 10 at Trois-Rivi0x00e8res two weeks ago qualified third with a 1:25.416 (103.639 mph) in the #51 JDC Motorsports / Oral & Facial Surgery Center / Twister Trailer Mazda.
Adam Christodoulou, currently second in the championship battle with two wins (Sebring and Salt Lake City) and just ten points behind leader Peter Dempsey, qualified 4th with a lap of 1:25.649 (103.357 mph) in the #11 JDC Motorsports / Molecule / Alpinestars Mazda. And Dempsey, the championship leader and winner of four races so far in the 2009 season, will start from 5th on the grid having turned a lap of 1:25.898 (103.057 mph) in the #3 Juncos Racing / The Collection / Motorsport Ireland / Queyside.ie Mazda. Rusty Mitchell, the Texan who qualified on pole at Trois-Rivi0x00e8res and led every lap but the last one (he finished 2nd), is sixth on the grid with a time of 1:26.032 (102.897 mph) in the #66 Mitchell Motorsports / Motorola Mazda.
Among the Master and Expert Series drivers, Californian Mike Guasch, who has already clinched the Master Series championship for drivers 45 and older, brought his usual well-judged aggression to the task of qualifying and put his #91 JDC Motorsports / Molecule Mazda 12th on the grid with a lap of 1:27.754 (100.877 mph). The 18-car field is scheduled to take the green for the start of Round 11 at 5:35 pm this afternoon.