MX-5: Series Birmingham practice one notes

Lamb Leads First MX-5 Cup Practice at Barber Motorsports Park BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (July 17, 2009) -- In the series' first visit to Barber Motorsports Park, Todd Lamb, of Atlanta, Ga., led the first SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup practice ...

Lamb Leads First MX-5 Cup Practice at Barber Motorsports Park

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (July 17, 2009) -- In the series' first visit to Barber Motorsports Park, Todd Lamb, of Atlanta, Ga., led the first SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup practice session. Marc Miller, of Holland, Mich., and Robert Michaelian, of Seal Beach, Calif., were second and third fastest, respectively, in preparation for Sunday's Round Five race, part of the Porsche 250 Presented by Legacy Credit Union.

Winner of the last three MX-5 Cup races, Lamb is one of the few drivers with previous race experience at the 17-turn, 2.38-mile Barber Motorsports Park.

"I've run a couple KONI races here in the last couple of years and I ran a Spec Miata race last year," Lamb said. "I got to learn from one of the best, Andy Lally. He really walked me through how to get around this track.

"It's a really technical track and tends to be slick, because, of course, it tends to be really hot in Alabama. The track rewards patience and car control, and from there you just have to work at putting a lap together, which is tough, because the car is sliding around. Overall, it's a lot of fun."

Driving the No. 84 AMG Racing/Traqmate/Luna-C Racing MX-5, Lamb entered his fastest lap, a 1:44.123 (82.287 mph) early in the 30-minute session, before taking some time to help his Atlanta Motorsports Group teammate learn the new track.

"The car is pretty good right now," Lamb said. "It was actually pretty good yesterday too (for the promoter test day), so I think all we need to do is fine tune a few things and we'll be good for qualifying and the race."

Miller entered his fastest time of the session on the same lap as Lamb. The current point leader turned a 1:44.652 (81.871 mph) in his No. 28 Team MER/MOCA/Race Now for Autism/Sparco MX-5 to end the session in second.

Returning to the series after missing the doubleheader at New Jersey Motorsports Park, Michaelian was back up to speed in no time, setting the third fastest lap of the session. Michaelian turned a 1:44.757 (81.789 mph) in the No. 19 AMG/Biz Rate MX-5.

Ara Malkhassian, of Sonoma, Calif., was the quickest of the ALARA Racing cars in fourth. The No. 11 ALARA Racing MX-5 pilot entered a 1:44.792 (81.762 mph).

Zach Ply, of Joliet, Ill., completed the top five. Driving the No. 27 Team MER/Insight Beverage Co. MX-5, Ply clocked a 1:44.936 (81.649 mph).

Justin Piscitell, currently second in the Championship standings, was sixth, followed by Jeff Mosing, Nick Mancuso, Christopher Rhoades and Stan Wilson.

There is one more SCCA Pro Racing Playboy MX-5 Cup practice session, scheduled for later today at 11:30 a.m. (CDT). Live timing, lap notes, news and results are available at www.mx-5cup.com.

-credit: scca pro racing

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About this article
Series SCCA
Drivers Andy Lally , Stan Wilson , Ara Malkhassian , Todd Lamb , Nick Mancuso , Justin Piscitell , Jeff Mosing , Marc Miller