Sophomore Trans-Am Sensations Scarallo and Diaz Win Puerto Rico
SALINAS, Puerto Rico (Dec. 6, 2004) -- Joey Scarallo and Jorge Diaz, Jr. co-drove a Trans-Am Series-spec Jaguar XKR to victory in Sunday's three-hour season finale for the Circuito Corredores de Puerto Rico at the Salinas Circuit. The duo, competing in the Club's GTS class, led all but two laps of the event, held at the 1.6-mile permanent road course.
The event traditionally ends the Puerto Rican club racing calendar. The Circuito Corredores sanctions racing which utilizes similar rules to the Trans-Am Series and has been a breeding ground for many Trans-Am competitors, including Trans-Am race winner Wally Castro, as well as Diaz. The three-hour event mandated teams run with just 10 tires and required two stops.
"We showed what two young guys from the Trans-Am Series can do when they team up to compete," said Scarallo, who completed his sophomore Trans-Am season in 2004, driving the No. 06 Toyo Tires/ROH Wheels Chevrolet Corvette. "Jorge put the car on the pole and he led every lap of his stint. I took over and led all of my laps, and then he finished it off. We rocked and rolled out there.
"There has been a long-standing belief in auto racing that young guys are fast," added Scarallo. "We proved that to be true on Sunday."
Diaz is no stranger to Puerto Rico club competition, having won four Circuit Corredores titles (GTU in 1999 and 2000, and GTS in 2001 and 2002). However, Diaz had never won the season finale until Sunday.
"We're extremely happy," said the Puerto Rican driver, who notched his first Trans-Am victory during his second full year of competition in 2004, driving the No. 8 Jaguar XKR. "This is the largest local event in Puerto Rico. It feels incredible. This is the only local race where we've had bad luck. We ran twice before and led many laps, but had bad luck with debris and traffic. This is a big boost."
The Motorock Trans-Am Series features closed-fendered, production-based, V-8-powered sports cars, competing on permanent road courses, and temporary street and airport circuits throughout North America. The Trans-Am Series is America's oldest continuously running road racing series and celebrates its 40th year of continuous competition in 2004.