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Laguna Seca: Touring Car qualifying notes

Altenburg, Marinus make an all-Mazda rront row at Mazda Raceway MONTEREY, Calif. (Sept. 6, 2003) -- Jeff Altenburg, of Ellicott City, Md., edged teammate Shauna Marinus, of Folsom, Calif., to take his first-career SCCA Pro Racing Speed World ...

Altenburg, Marinus make an all-Mazda rront row at Mazda Raceway

MONTEREY, Calif. (Sept. 6, 2003) -- Jeff Altenburg, of Ellicott City, Md., edged teammate Shauna Marinus, of Folsom, Calif., to take his first-career SCCA Pro Racing Speed World Challenge pole position for today's Speed Touring Car event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

Driving the No. 40 TriPoint Engineering/Mazdaspeed Mazda Protege ES, Altenburg turned a blistering 1:42.939 (78.267 mph) lap around the 2.238-mile circuit to break the old track record of 1:43.797 (77.620 mph) set by Paul Lambert last year.

"The car was good but it really wasn't extreme," Altenburg said. "So, I think we are going to have to make more changes for the race because we haven't run more than seven or eight laps in a row. It is really going to be a matter of who can manage their tires the best. We're going to have big problems by the end of the race.

"But, as always the TriPoint guys did an awesome job. And, Shauna was fantastic again, she is right there."

Marinus, driving the No. 4 team car to Altenburg, once again narrowly missed out on her first-career pole position and will start second for the fourth time in five races. Marinus was just 0.014-second behind Altenburg--the third time in her four front-row appearances that she missed the pole by less than one tenth of a second.

"Wow," Marinus said. "It is a lot of little things I guess. When it's that close its like 'gosh maybe I could've shifted a little faster or maybe I could've straightened the wheel a little sooner or hitting that fly on the back straight -- again.' That dang fly from Road America followed me all the here. I thought I took care of him there."

Qualifying third in the No. 42 RealTime Racing/Acura Acura RSX Type S was Pierre Kleinubing, who turned a fastest lap of 1:43.028 (78.200 mph). Road America winner race winner Peter Cunningham was fourth in his Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V, followed by runaway point leader Bill Auberlen's BMW 325i.

Today's Round Eight race will take its standing start at 3:35 p.m. (PDT). Auberlen can clinch the 2003 Speed Touring Car Drivers' Championship with a good finish and a poor finish by second-place Kleinubing.

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About this article
Series PWC
Drivers Pierre Kleinubing , Paul Lambert , Peter Cunningham , Jeff Altenburg
Teams RealTime Racing