MX-5: Series Laguna Seca qualifying notes

Lamb Wins MX-5 Cup Pole at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca MONTEREY, Calif. (May 16, 2009) -- Todd Lamb, of Atlanta, Ga., qualified on pole for today's SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup Round Two race, part of the Verizon Festival of Speed ...

Lamb Wins MX-5 Cup Pole at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

MONTEREY, Calif. (May 16, 2009) -- Todd Lamb, of Atlanta, Ga., qualified on pole for today's SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup Round Two race, part of the Verizon Festival of Speed Presented by SPEEDCOM weekend at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Ara Malkhassian, of Sonoma, Calif., will start second.

After topping Friday's practice times, Lamb came out on top of the 30-minute MX-Cup qualifying session as well. Driving the No. 84 AMG Racing MX-5, Lamb entered a 1:42.382 (78.693 mph) around the 11-turn, 2.238-mile road course to score his first MX-5 Cup pole in only his second event with the series.

"The track warmed up pretty quick because the sun was out this morning," Lamb said. "I've got to hand it to Jason [Hoover] and the guys at Atlanta Motorsports Group who did a phenomenal job getting this car ready for qualifying. I would hit the brakes and these Cobalt pads would stop it like something fierce. It was amazing, going into Turn Two, how quick it stops.

"The car felt about the same as yesterday. We made a few minor adjustments last night, but all-in-all, we didn't change much because it was pretty good yesterday. It took us awhile to get here, but as it sits right now, I think the setup's pretty good for the race.

"[Winning the pole] feels fantastic. I didn't know what to expect at my first MX-5 Cup race here, but overall I'm thrilled to death."

Lamb has a busy schedule this weekend, competing in both MX-5 Cup and the KONI Challenge. With only one session in his KONI car between MX-5 Cup qualifying and this afternoon's race, Lamb is confident he'll be able to keep his focus.

"It shouldn't be too bad," Lamb said. "I've got one practice session with KONI today before I'll starting focusing on the MX-5 Cup race."

For the second race in-a-row, Malkhassian will start second. The Californian entered a 1:42.921 (78.281 mph) in the No. 11 ALARA Racing MX-5.

Marc Miller, of Holland, Mich., will start third in the No. 28 Team MER/MOCA/RaceForAutism MX-5. The Road Atlanta race winner led the first half of the qualifying session with a 1:43.000 (78.221 mph) before giving up spots to Lamb and Malkhassian.

Justin Piscitell, of Patterson, N.Y., will start his No. 89 ALARA Racing/DAMG Racing/MAZDASPEED MX-5 in fourth. Piscitell entered a qualifying time of 1:43.027 (78.200 mph). He is followed by Nick Mancuso on the qualifying order. The driver of the No. 29 Team MER/LakeForestSportsCar MX-5 turned a 1:43.272 (78.015 mph).

The polesitter from Road Atlanta, Lyonel Kent, qualified sixth at Mazda Raceway, followed by Brett Smrz and Robert Michaelian.

Newcomer Max Riddle will start his first MX-5 Cup race from the ninth spot.

Zach Ply completed the top 10.

Round Two of the SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup at Mazda Raceway will go green later today, at 11:25 a.m. (PDT). Live timing and lap notes are available at www.mx-5cup.com. The race will begin airing on syndicated cable on June 16. A full TV broadcast schedule is available on the series' Web site.

-credit: scca pro racing

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Series SCCA
Drivers Ara Malkhassian , Todd Lamb , Nick Mancuso , Brett Smrz , Justin Piscitell , Lyonel Kent , Marc Miller , Max Riddle