Road America: BFGoodrich preview

Tire Compound Mandated at Road America - For the first time this season, BFGoodrich® Tires engineers have mandated the BFGoodrich® g-ForceTM T/A® radials hard ...

Tire Compound Mandated at Road America - For the first time this season, BFGoodrich® Tires engineers have mandated the BFGoodrich® g-ForceTM T/A® radials hard #75 compound for all competitors at Road America. The mandating of tire compound is based on the combination of car weight (2,800 pounds) and the sustained 180-plus miles per hour speed the Trans-Am cars reach at Road America. (In comparison, the CART Champ cars, which exceed 200 mph, weigh only 1,550 pounds.)

"From a tire perspective, the expected high ambient temperature in August and the length of time at high speed on these heavy cars takes a toll on tires," said BFGoodrich® Tires lead engineer Gary Blalock. "We have taken a conservative approach and mandated the hard compound for the past couple of years and it has worked very well. Our #75 compound tires will allow drivers to race hard for the entire 100-mile event and provide some exciting racing action. The hard compound has proven to be extremely durable without sacrificing speed - a perfect combination for Road America."

Legendary Road America - Road America is one of the most scenic and exciting race tracks on the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich® Tires Cup schedule. Measuring four miles long, with 14 turns, it provides ample opportunity for drivers to go flat out, reaching top speeds of approximately 180 miles per hour. The key to doing well at Road America is maintaining top speed as much as possible, keeping up momentum through each of the turns. There is a virtually even split of right and left hand turns, requiring teams to set up a 'neutral' race car.

BFGoodrich® Tires Cup Battle Tightens - After passing the mid-way point for the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich® Tires Cup, the chase for the BFGoodrich® Tires Cup has become a three-way battle. The defending BFGoodrich® Tires Cup Champion, Paul Gentilozzi; the leading contender for the Trans-Am Rookie of the Year, Butch Leitzinger and a veteran career road racer, Boris Said, all have their sights set on holding the Cup at season's end. The competition between these three talented drivers has been fierce with Said and Leitzinger each secured three victories, while Gentilozzi has been victories once. With five races remaining, Said currently has a 14-point lead over Butch Leitzinger and a 24-point lead over Paul Gentilozzi.

After Round Seven of the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich® Tires Cup, Boris Said, with 198 points, leads in the battle for the BFGoodrich® Tires Cup, followed closely by Butch Leitzinger with 184 points and Paul Gentilozzi with 174 points. Not far behind are Johnny Miller with 152 points and Randy Ruhlman with 136 points.

Last Year at Road America. Michael Lewis won his first career Trans-Am Series race at last year's rain shortened event at Road America. Lewis took advantage of a first lap spin from pole-sitter Paul Gentilozzi and led the entire race until officials called the race due to extreme weather. Johnny Miller finished second and Paul Gentilozzi finished third to make it a podium sweep for Jaguar.

Speed Channel to Televise Trans-Am - The Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich* Tires Cup race from Road America will be broadcast tape-delayed on August 18 at 12:00 p.m. ET, on Speed Channel.

BFGoodrich® Tires Contingency Award. BFGoodrich® Tires has established a contingency award for the top 10 finishers in each race this season. The top five finishers will receive two tires and the finishers from sixth through tenth will receive one tire.

BFGoodrich® Tires "Take Control" Award. BFGoodrich® Tires will sponsor the BFGoodrich® Tires "Take Control" Award, an award that will be given to the driver who leads the most laps in each Trans-Am race. In the event of a tie, the driver with the highest finishing position will receive the award. For their efforts, the driver will receive a free set of BFGoodrich* g-Force T/A* radials.

-bfg-

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About this article
Series Trans-Am
Drivers Butch Leitzinger , Boris Said , Paul Gentilozzi , Johnny Miller , Randy Ruhlman , Michael Lewis