Nazareth Friday AM sessions

Friday, April 25, 1997 . The Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix is round three of the 12-race 1997 KOOL/Toyota Atlantic Championship. The KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic communications staff of James Hyneman, Blair Hefty, and...

Friday, April 25, 1997

. The Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix is round three of the 12-race 1997 KOOL/Toyota Atlantic Championship. The KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic communications staff of James Hyneman, Blair Hefty, and Anne Roy will be available throughout the weekend to assist in your media needs.

. Now in its 24th year, the $1.34-million 1997 KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic Championship is the richest and longest-running open-wheel development series in North America, and a primary training ground for future Indy Car and Formula One drivers. . Thirty-one drivers are entered this weekend including series points leader and Homestead race winner Anthony Lazzaro, Long Beach race winner Alexandre Tagliani, rookie-of-the-year points leader and Homestead runner-up Memo Gidley, Portuguese rookie Joao Barbosa, and Case Montgomery. Lazzaro leads Tagliani by seven points, 36-29. Gidley is third with 25 points followed by Barbosa with 24 points. . SCHEDULE (ET): Fri. April 25 practice: 8:15 a.m. to 8:45 p.m. qualifying: 1:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sat. April 26 warm-up 8:00 a.m. to 8:20 a.m. RACE: 4:15 p.m. (ET) . LAST YEAR'S KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic race at Nazareth was the third event of the season and was won by 1996 Atlantic champion and current PPG CART rookie Patrick Carpentier, of Joliette, Que. Carpentier took the lead from polesitter Stuart Crow, of Dallas, Texas, on lap 19 and lapped the field through fourth place to win his second consecutive race at Nazareth. Carpentier finished 13.3-seconds ahead of Crow to capture his first win in 1996. He completed the 60-lap race in 31 minutes, 32.393 seconds at an average speed of 114.14 mph (183.651 km/hr). Lee Bentham finished in third place. By virtue of his victory, Carpentier climbed into the series lead with 51 points followed by Lee Bentham with 42 and Case Montgomery third with 41. . Nazareth Speedway is a one-mile/1.609-km tri-oval; race length is 60 laps/60 miles . RECORDS: Qual.: Greg Ray 0.23.029-sec/156.32 mph Ralt RT-41 9/94 Race Lap: Patrick Carpentier 0.23.152-sec/155.49 mph Ralt RT-41 4/95

. U.S TELEVISION: ESPN2 - - Saturday, May 3 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.ET 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. PT

. VIDEO NEWS: Saturday, April 26, 1997 - - 7:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. (firm) ET GE1, KU transponder 24, audio 6.2 MHz and 6.8 MHz

. This year's race will mark the second consecutive year of impressive increases in Atlantic entries at Nazareth: 1995 - 16 Atlantic entries 1996 - 23 1997 - 30

. PRIZE MONEY (US): total race purse $85,000 winner's earnings $20,000

. LAP/MILE LEADERS: Position Driver Laps Led Miles Led

1 Case Montgomery 37 52.750 2 Alexandre Tagliani 24 38.160 3 Chuck West 9 12.600 4 Memo Gidley (R) 6 8.400 5 Anthony Lazzaro 4 5.790

TOTALS 80 117.700

. TRD ENGINE BUILDER OF THE YEAR OF THE YEAR STANDINGS:

Position Engine Builder TRD Points

1 Hasselgren Racing Engines 38 2 Bertil's Racing Engines 31 3 Loyning's Engine Service 25 4 Advanced Engine Development 2 5 Quicksilver RacEngines 0 PRACTICE SESSION

8:18 a.m. Session begins for a scheduled 30-minutes under clear, sunny skies and temperatures in the mid 50s  a total of 30 cars will officially attempt single-car qualifying this afternoon

8:35 - - YELLOW FLAG for debris on track

8:37 - - Session resumes

8:54 - - Session ends with #19 MEMO GIDLEY, of San Rafael, Calif., fastest in the Lynx Racing-prepared Ralt RT-41 at 23.558 = 152.81 mph.

#32 ALEX BARRON, of Vista, Calif., is second fastest in the Lynx Racing-Victory Circle Racing/Red Line Oil Ralt RT-41 at 24.008 = 149.95 mph.

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Series Atlantic
Drivers Greg Ray , Memo Gidley , Patrick Carpentier , Anthony Lazzaro , Joao Barbosa , Lee Bentham