Plumb Takes First-Career SCCA SPEED Touring Car Pole at Mid-Ohio LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 26, 2004) -- Matt Plumb, of Newport, R.I., was fastest in SCCA SPEED World Challenge Touring Car qualifying this morning, grabbing his first career Air Force...
Plumb Takes First-Career SCCA SPEED Touring Car Pole at Mid-Ohio
LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 26, 2004) -- Matt Plumb, of Newport, R.I., was fastest in SCCA SPEED World Challenge Touring Car qualifying this morning, grabbing his first career Air Force Reserve Pole Position for this afternoon's Round Three race at Mid-Ohio. Sweden's Nic Jonsson qualified second and Peter Cunningham, of West Bend, Wis., will start third on the grid.
Plumb, who was the 2003 SPEED Touring Car Rookie of the Year, set a new qualifying lap record early in the session, turning a fast time of 1:34.160 (86.329 mph) on the 15-turn, 2.258-mile circuit. Piloting the No. 43 RealTime Racing/SANZ/Sun Microsystem Acura TSX, Plumb only needed a few laps to turn in a quick time and then he decided to park his machine on pit lane for the remainder of the session, hoping his time would be good enough for the pole.
"It was my decision," Plumb said about parking his Acura after setting his quick lap. "Based on these tires and where their peak performance is, if you get a decent lap and put all the pieces together in the first two laps chances are that's the best you're going to do. So, rather than beat on my tires and try to go a little bit faster, I decided to come in, park it and hope it stands up."
Plumb broke the old qualifying track record of 1:42.487 (79.315 mph) set by Chuck Hemmingson under damp conditions in 2003. The new track record is largely a result of the new Toyo Proxes RA-1 Tires.
Jonsson, who was quickest in Friday's combined practice sessions, will start his No. 27 Lectric Air/Tecmark Corporation BMW 325Ci on the outside of row one. Jonsson is coming off a second place performance in Round Two at Lime Rock Park.
Cunningham, who had a mechanical issue with his No. 4 Nissan/NISMO/TeamRTR Nissan Sentra SE-R and missed Friday's afternoon practice session, resolved the problem and qualified his machine third on the grid. Cunningham last won at Mid-Ohio in 1997, when drove an Acura NSX to victory circle.
SPEED Touring Car point leader Bill Auberlen, of Rolling Hills Estates, who is shooting for a record-tying fourth consecutive win, will start fourth and Brazilian Pierre Kleinubing will start fifth. Auberlen is hoping to tie the mark held by Michael Galati and David Murry.
Today's Round Three race will make its standing start at 4:40 p.m. (EDT), with Live Timing & Scoring Presented by Cadillac available at www.world-challenge.com. Today's race will air at 12:00 p.m. (EDT), Sunday, June 27 on SPEED Channel.
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