West Michigan Grand Prix Grand Rapids, Michigan July 24-26, 1998 The NTB Trans-Am Series enters Round Eight of its 33rd season here with the inaugural West Michigan Grand Prix NTB Trans-Am race, the first NTB Trans-Am race in Grand Rapids. The...
West Michigan Grand Prix Grand Rapids, Michigan July 24-26, 1998
The NTB Trans-Am Series enters Round Eight of its 33rd season here with the inaugural West Michigan Grand Prix NTB Trans-Am race, the first NTB Trans-Am race in Grand Rapids. The 1998 NTB Trans-Am Series consists of 13 races, and the Grand Rapids NTB Trans-Am race will be the 361st race in NTB Trans-Am history.
Event Web Site: http://www.westmichigangrandprix.com/
Race Date: Sunday, July 26, 1998
Green Flag: 1:00 p.m. (EDT)
Television: - (confirm local listings) Sunday, July 24 - Speedvision @ 1:00 p.m. LIVE EDT Saturday, August 8 - FOX Sports Net @ 12:00 p.m. EDT
Circuit: Scott Brayton Memorial Street Circuit 1.58 mile, 13-turn temporary street circuit
Race Length: 64 laps, 101.12 miles.
Last Race Recap (Round 7/Cleveland, July 11): With a late-race charge, Bill Saunders passed runner-up Brian Simo with two laps to go and held on to the checkered flag to earn his first career NTB Trans-Am win at the Speedvision NTB Trans-Am Grand Prix. Saunders started the 42-lap, 88.452-mile race sixth and steadily advanced to the front, moving to third with nine laps to go, behind leaders Paul Gentilozzi and Simo. Three laps later, Gentilozzi's motor let go and Simo fell under attack from Saunders as the pair swapped the lead position three times before Saunders took the lead for good with two laps to go, posting a 0.193-second margin for the win and earning the DynoMax Turn On The Power Award for turning in the best drive of the race. Finishing third after starting of the pole was Michael Lewis followed by Chris Neville and Randy Ruhlman. Lewis held a short-lived lead after the green flag flew, surrendering the top position on lap two to Simo. One lap later Lewis fell to third as Gentilozzi made his move, and for the next 32 laps Simo and Gentilozzi were locked in a nose-to-tail battle, exchanging passes for the lead no fewer than seven times until Gentilozzi dropped out on lap 36. Behind the lead pack a tough battle raged on for fourth through sixth, with Neville, Bruce Qvale and Ruhlman vying for position. With two laps to go a tire on Qvale's No. 44 Huffaker/Qvale Motorsports Mustang Cobra lost air and he dropped from fifth to his eight-place finish, while Ruhlman advanced to score his third career top-five finish.