Sonoma, CA - Dale Earnhardt Jr. took a seat this afternoon during American Le Mans Series qualifying. Co-driver Boris Said made the two lap qualifying run under a new single car format to put the No. 8 Chevrolet Corvette C5-R third in the GTS...
Sonoma, CA - Dale Earnhardt Jr. took a seat this afternoon during American Le Mans Series qualifying. Co-driver Boris Said made the two lap qualifying run under a new single car format to put the No. 8 Chevrolet Corvette C5-R third in the GTS class for Sunday's ALMS Infineon Grand Prix of Sonoma.
"It was good," Said commented. "I am still not familiar with the carbon brakes so the first lap I didn't have them warm enough. The second lap I had a good lap going and just went off in (turn) 7B a little bit. I think it's a cool format and I think they should always do it. I think it's exciting. You have to get it done in two laps."
Although Earnhardt did not qualify the car, he did spend time in the Corvette during the second practice today. Earnhardt believes that they have a good chance of coming away with a strong finish in the two-hour, 45-minute race but admits that he still has a long way to go in order to compete with some of the best sports car drivers in the world.
"It's going real good," Earnhardt said. "The car is real fast and I'm comfortable in the car. My co-driver is very very quick and we feel like we have a good chance this weekend. It's a great car. Corvette has done a lot of testing. They deserve it because there is a lot of hard work behind it. I am very fortunate just to be able to climb right in and go so fast. It's going to be different, watching for the prototypes, and the GT cars, being careful and just having a lot of respect and courtesy out there for everybody. You know I don't do this every weekend and to be here is a big honor for me to race against such a great group of competitors. I am just trying to earn respect and pay my dues out there and take my time and work my way up. I feel like we have a good chance to get a great finish this weekend if we keep our heads straight."
This will be the first time a full time NASCAR Cup driver has competed in the American Le Mans Series. So as all eyes are on "Little E" this weekend, American Le Mans Series regulars will try to show the NASCAR star how it's done.
The Infineon Grand Prix of Sonoma will start at 11 a.m. (PDT) and will be televised live by CBS Sports in North America from 3-5 p.m. (EDT). MotorsTV will have full live coverage in Europe, and the American Le Mans Series Radio Web will broadcast the event live online at www.americanlemans.com.