Daytona II: SunTrust Racing preview

SunTrust Racing Team Very Focused on Championship Goals at Brumos Porsche 250 at Daytona Angelelli To Race Double Duty in Both Grand American and IROC Races Daytona Beach, Florida (June 28, 2006) -- In the focused style for which they are ...

SunTrust Racing Team Very Focused on Championship Goals at Brumos Porsche 250 at Daytona

Angelelli To Race Double Duty in Both Grand American and IROC Races

Daytona Beach, Florida (June 28, 2006) -- In the focused style for which they are known, the No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley team has persistently climbed the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series Daytona Prototype championship standings to their current position, three points shy of the number one spot.

Five straight top-four finishes, including a victory at Laguna Seca, elevated the SunTrust team from outside the Top Ten to a close 297-294 point gap and within reach of a potential back-to-back championship. The rival No. 01 CompUSA/Ganassi Racing Lexus Riley team of Scott Pruett and Luis Diaz and the No. 76 Krohn Racing Ford Riley of Jorg Bermeister and Colin Braun currently share the number one spot in the points chase.

SunTrust car owner/driver Wayne Taylor has juggled driving duties and management, including bringing in Danish hotshoe Jan Magnussen to team with Max "the Ax" Angelelli at selected races, all part of an effort to possibly attain the goal of another championship.

"Daytona is my home track. I have so many friends and supporters here. We are really focused on this championship," said Wayne Taylor, who captured the pole at the Brumos Porsche 250 last year. "When we left Daytona earlier this year, we were in pretty bad shape. We have been able to turn it around and now we're within three points of the championship. Also Max has a real shot of winning the Driver Championship. This race we will just stay focused on our goal."

"I think the team has been working hard to have a good car for Wayne, Max and Jan this year," said Bill Riley, who oversees the preparation and running of the No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley. "It has been paying off with a steady climb for the championship. It's always special to run at Daytona. We have really prepared to make sure we have a good car for this week. I think we'll have a strong package for this race."

Taylor and Angelelli will pair for the Thursday night Brumos Porsche 250 race, in hopes of another podium finish. Last year the team finished second and led the championship points battle the remainder of the season.

"I'm looking forward to the race. We have five races to go and we absolutely need to win this race," explained Max Angelelli, who is currently fourth in the DP driver standings, "The championship is completely open, like we are starting from the beginning. From the driver's point of view, it's really tough. We're not dominating. We have to fight; we have to have the best car, the best race strategy, and the best drivers in order to win the race. That means the championship is at the very top level of competition."

Angelelli will serve double-duty as he drives in both the Brumos Porsche 250 race at 7:00 p.m. ET and the 10:00 p.m. IROC race, Round 3 of 4 and the first on the Daytona road course. Taylor drove to a sixth-place finish in the first IROC round in February on Daytona's high banks. Angelelli drove to the same finish, after leading the race, at Texas Motor Speedway in April.

Angelelli, who participated in three days of IROC testing last week on the Daytona road course, is feeling more confident with the IROC-style cars.

"I am not experienced in this style of car, except at the Texas Motor Speedway," said Angelelli. "I wasn't sure what to expect with this car on the Daytona road course. I expected there would be some problems and a lot of adjustment for me, but I was surprised to find the IROC cars on the road course to be a very good race car, very well balanced and I had no issues at all."

Angelelli and Taylor were invited to participate in the 2006 Crown Royal IROC Series after winning the 2005 Grand American Rolex Sports Car Daytona Prototype championship. The duo is splitting the driving duties with each competing in two of four races and their points counting as a single entity, an IROC first. This week's race will be the first road race of the series to be held at Daytona since IROC's inaugural 1973-74 season, won by legendary driver Mark Donohue. Road courses have been absent from the IROC Series since 1991, when NASCAR driver Rusty Wallace won the last road course event at Watkins Glen.

-sr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Jan Magnussen , Scott Pruett , Wayne Taylor , Colin Braun , Luis Diaz , Max Angelelli , Mark Donohue
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Krohn Racing