Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Qualifies on Front Row at Barber Leeds, Alabama -- The Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team qualified on the front row at Barber Motorsport Park for round 11 of the Grand American Rolex Series presented...
Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Qualifies on Front Row at Barber
Leeds, Alabama -- The Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team qualified on the front row at Barber Motorsport Park for round 11 of the Grand American Rolex Series presented by Crown Royal Reserve Porsche 250 to be run tomorrow afternoon.
Patrick Long got the call to qualify today and posted a time of 1:22.496 with an average speed of 101 mph that will see the young Californian start from the outside of the front row on tomorrow's grid. Long was able to improve the Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team's position on the weekend, as they were only able to post a best effort of third in practice yesterday.
The 2.38-mile, 16-turn track has witnessed a mixed bag of weather throughout the weeks practice. With temperatures nearing 1000x00b0 and humidity at the same level, the grip level of the track changes dramatically. The test session this morning was overcast, however as the cars took to the track for the 20-minute qualifying session the sun returned bringing a rise in track temperatures.
Patrick Long was satisfied with his qualifying run. "I had some problems with the 97 car playing some games, so I may have had a few more tenths in the car, but really not enough for the pole. We struggled through practice with the setup, but Greg Fordahl [team engineer] was able to pull a rabbit out of his hat and improve the car for qualifying. A front row starting spot is important here as the track is tight and traffic can be tough. We are looking to have a very good day tomorrow."
Mike Rockenfeller is happy with the way the car has progressed during the weekend. "The 76 car has been at the top all weekend, so they deserve the pole. I had hoped we would be a little quicker, but the weather is really hard on the grip level of the track this weekend. We have a good race car, we will need to stay out of trouble and be ready with a good strategy for the race tomorrow."
"Patrick did a good job to get us on the front row," said Alex Job, team owner. "The crew has really worked hard on the setup of the car this weekend. We tested here three weeks ago and we thought we would be good right off of the trailer, but none of the setup from the test really applied to this weekend's conditions. This track is the closest to our sponsor Ruby Tuesday's headquarters so we have a strong contingent of support this weekend."
The Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team is currently seventh in the battle for the team championship. Long and Rockenfeller are seventh in the drivers point standings, 70 out of the lead in the Daytona Prototype category.