Gentilozzi Three for Three on 2004 CLEVELAND (July 2, 2004) -- Three-time Motorock Trans-Am Series Champion, Paul Gentilozzi recovered from starting last in his Jaguar XKR to win the Trans-Am on the Tarmac at Cleveland. His 27th series win and...
Gentilozzi Three for Three on 2004
CLEVELAND (July 2, 2004) -- Three-time Motorock Trans-Am Series Champion, Paul Gentilozzi recovered from starting last in his Jaguar XKR to win the Trans-Am on the Tarmac at Cleveland. His 27th series win and his third in as many tries in 2004. Tomy Drissi continued to finish consistently with a second. Drissi drove the No. 5 Dodgeball -- The Movie Jaguar XKR to a second podium finish in three weeks. Tommy Kendall started strong and led until lap 26 when a seal in the water pump failed ending his day.
During Thursdays qualifying, Gentilozzi's No. 3 Jaguar XKR was sent into the turn eight wall at over 90 miles per hour, destroying the car. The Rocketsports crew headed straight to Lansing to pick up an old show car and returned. The crew converted it into a race car in nine hours. The chassis was the 1999 Ford Mustang he drove to the series championship. Gentilozzi praised his Rocketsports Racing team for showing their drive and determination to succeed and giving him his third win this year. "When you have a crew like I do, that has worked together for 15 or 16 years you can recover like we did. The people effort is amazing," said Gentilozzi. "When you have a group of guys who work as hard as they do it's easy to take them for granted, but I can't thank them enough. They continue to surprise me and I am honored to work with them."
Drissi and his crew have built a solid program over the last several weeks. The white and green Jaguar has shown consistency, starting and finishing among the top cars. Drissi set a new series lap record by turning a lap of 1:13.794 (102.74 mph). "I learned a lot today, that is what I have to do," said Drissi. "I've continued to learn from Paul and it is showing in my performance. My guys have also have given me awesome cars, they are fast."
Kendall finished 11th with mechanical issues. The Jaguar AJ-V8 ran strong and led the most laps. "The car was performing nicely early on," said Kendall. "Drissi was giving me fits but after the caution the car really got fast. The engine department gives me great engines but we keep getting bit by little things. What put us out today was a seal on the water pump, same result but different cause. I still love this cat and we'll be running hard in Toronto."