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Sebring: Touring Car practice one report

Crescentini Tops Morning SPEED Touring Car Practice at Sebring SEBRING, Fla. (March, 14, 2007) -- In his debut with STaSIS Motorsport, Dino Crescentini, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., topped SPEED Touring Car morning practice at Sebring...

Crescentini Tops Morning SPEED Touring Car Practice at Sebring

SEBRING, Fla. (March, 14, 2007) -- In his debut with STaSIS Motorsport, Dino Crescentini, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., topped SPEED Touring Car morning practice at Sebring International Raceway, part of the 55th Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring. Charles Espenlaub, of Lutz, Fla., and Pierre Kleinubing, of Coconut Creek, Fla., completed the top three.

Driving the No. 19 STaSIS Motorsport Audi A4 for the first time in an official series session, Crescentini jumped to the top of the time sheets in the closing minutes of SPEED Touring Car morning practice at Sebring. Crescentini clocked a 2:21.267 around the 17-turn, 3.7-mile road course, with an average speed of 94.289 mph.

"The Audi with STaSIS is a great combination," Crescentini said. "They have devoted a lot of time to testing and, with that kind of formula and great people working on the car, we have a better chance for success. This is only the tip of the iceberg. We need to continue with this momentum and make it stick all the way to the checkered flag.

"We have a few more adjustments we're going to make. We're still playing with the car -- we don't feel it's optimized. When it is, we might do things and go backwards, but we're not going to take those chances at this stage."

Tindol Motorsports pilot Espenalub led most of the session in his No. 97 Mazdaspeed/Tindol/Oakley/Sparco Mazda 6, with a time of 2:21.339 (94.241 mph). Espenlaub had little opportunity to improve his time however, as he pulled off in Turn Seven with mechanical problems shortly after setting his fast time.

Defending SPEED Touring Car Champion Kleinubing finished the session in third with a 2:21.660 (94.028 mph) behind the wheel of his No. 1 Acura Certified Pre-Owned/RealTime Acura TSX. His teammate, Peter Cunningham, did not have as successful of a session; the No. 42 Acura Certified Pre-Owned/RealTime Acura TSX pulled off course early with a driveline problem.

Kuno Wittmer of Montreal, Quebec was fourth quick in his No. 44 Acura Certified Pre-Owned Acura RSX, followed by Michael Galati of Olmsted, Ohio, in his first official practice session behind the wheel of the No. 95 Mazda North America/Tindol Mazda 6.

The second SPEED Touring Car practice session at Sebring will take place later today, at 4:45 p.m. (EST).

-credit: scca-wc

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Series PWC
Drivers Pierre Kleinubing , Michael Galati , Peter Cunningham , Charles Espenlaub , Kuno Wittmer , Dino Crescentini