Birmingham: Series round eight preview

GRAND-AM ROLEX SERIES DAYTONA PROTOTYPE POINTS BATTLE HEATS UP ENTERING RACE AT BARBER MOTORSPORTS PARK Keen, Werner seek fourth straight GT class victory DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 14, 2009) - With three points separating the top three teams,...

GRAND-AM ROLEX SERIES DAYTONA PROTOTYPE POINTS BATTLE HEATS UP ENTERING RACE AT BARBER MOTORSPORTS PARK

Keen, Werner seek fourth straight GT class victory

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 14, 2009) - With three points separating the top three teams, the Daytona Prototype championship battle has tightened up entering Sunday's Porsche 250 presented by Legacy Credit Union at Barber Motorsports Park, Round 8 of the 2009 Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16.

The green flag for the two-hour, 45-minute race is set to wave at 2 p.m. CT at the 16-turn Birmingham, Ala., circuit (SPEED, live, 3 p.m. ET).

Last year, Scott Pruett held off Darren Law by .341 seconds in what was then the fourth-closest finish in Rolex Series history. It was the sixth and final victory of the season for Pruett and Memo Rojas, who went on to capture the championship in the No. 01 Lexus Riley fielded by TELMEX Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates.

Pruett and Rojas return to the immaculately prepared 2.3-mile circuit leading Brian Frisselle and Max Angelelli by only one point (199-198) in the Daytona Prototype championship. Frisselle and Angelelli won the most recent Rolex Series event, the Brumos Porsche 250 at Daytona International Speedway, in the No. 10 SunTrust Ford Dallara. Angelelli edged Alex Gurney by .270 seconds, the fifth-closest finish in series history.

Gurney and Jon Fogarty are third in the championship with 196 points, winning a pair of races in the No. 99 GAINSCO Pontiac Riley entered by Bob Stallings Racing.

Penske Racing teammates Timo Bernhard and Romain Dumas make their debut at Barber fourth in the standings, 17 points back, and are seeking their first Daytona Prototype victory in the No. 12 Verizon Wireless Porsche Riley.

Keen, Werner Won Four of Last Five to Build Lead in GT Standings

Leh Keen and Dirk Werner seek their fourth consecutive victory in the No. 87 Farnbacher Loles Racing Porsche GT3. Their three-race winning streak is the longest in the Acxiom GT division since the Rolex Series changed to a two-class format in 2005. The pair won four of the last five races, opening a 29-point lead in the standings (221-192).

Defending Barber GT winners Sylvain Tremblay and Nick Ham also finished second in the Brumos Porsche 250 in the No. 70 SpeedSource/Castrol Syntec Mazda RX-8. The pair won earlier this year at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

Defending GT champions Kelly Collins and Paul Edwards are still seeking their first victory of 2009 in the No. 07 Drinkin' Mate Pontiac GXP.R, but run second in the championship on the strength of three runner-up finishes. The pair won the Porsche 250 in dominating fashion - by more than 30 seconds - in 2007.

Practice for the Porsche 250 presented by Legacy Credit Union begins at 9:20 a.m. Friday. Qualifying is set for 1 p.m. Saturday. The weekend also includes a pair of Grand-Am KONI Sports Car Challenge races, a Street Tuner race at 2:50 p.m. Saturday and a Grand Sport round 8:20 a.m. Sunday.

-credit: grand-am

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Alex Gurney , Paul Edwards , Jon Fogarty , Scott Pruett , Kelly Collins , Darren Law , Timo Bernhard , Max Angelelli , Sylvain Tremblay , Memo Rojas , Romain Dumas , Nick Ham , Lehman Keen , Brian Frisselle , Bob Stallings , Dirk Werner , Felix Sabates
Teams Team Penske , Chip Ganassi Racing , SpeedSource