Borcheller and Kelleners Finish Eighth at Fontana In Kodak EasyShare DORAN JE4 Pontiac No. 54 FONTANA, Calif., April 3 - A slimmed-down Kodak EasyShare DORAN JE4 Pontiac fielded by Bell Motorsports/Feeds the Need Racing and driven by ...
Borcheller and Kelleners Finish Eighth at Fontana In Kodak EasyShare DORAN JE4 Pontiac No. 54
FONTANA, Calif., April 3 - A slimmed-down Kodak EasyShare DORAN JE4 Pontiac fielded by Bell Motorsports/Feeds the Need Racing and driven by Terry Borcheller and Ralf Kelleners ran as high as second and finished a solid eighth in Sunday's Ferrari Maserati 400 Rolex series race at California Speedway.
After trimming as much weight as possible from the car prior to the two-hour-and-45-minute race, which was televised live on SPEED, and working very hard on the car's set-up, the team was pleased to escape relatively unscathed in the very rough race.
There were six caution flags and six lead changes among six drivers, and at the end the 0.096 of a second margin of victory was the closest in Rolex series history.
Borcheller drove for the first 48 laps of the 86-lap race and Kelleners drove the final 38 laps.
Borcheller qualified ninth but moved to eighth at the start. He ran around those spots for awhile but dropped to 18th on lap 11 after a pit stop under yellow for fuel as a strategy move. By lap 12 he was back in tenth spot. He continued to march up the scoring pylon, and by lap 17 he was back up to seventh.
A full-course yellow for debris on the frontstretch from lap 22 to lap 24 attracted a rash of pit stops, but the Kodak EasyShare car stayed out at that point and Borcheller suddenly found himself in second spot. He ran in second, third or fourth from that point until dropping to fifth on lap 37, but he was still in striking distance to the leaders.
Borcheller pitted under a full-course caution on lap 48, when Kelleners got in. Despite the pit stop Kelleners quickly had the car back up to eighth, and by lap 68 he was sixth.
The water temperature was dangerously high during Kelleners' stint because two paper towels got lodged in the front of the car and affected the radiator. The wind which caused the test day to be canceled on Thursday started to pick up during the race, and although it wasn't nearly as bad as it was on Thursday it still caused litter to fly throughout the facility, including the track itself.
Kelleners had to nurse the car home and he dropped back to eighth at the end, but it was still a very good showing by the team in the extremely competitive, hard-fought event.
Terry Borcheller: "It was a pretty eventful race. There was a lot of contact. We seemed to be down on power today for some reason, which made it hard to sustain your position.
"One time Frisselle got freight-trained and he got impatient and he really got into me. That really bothered me. He needs to have more etiquette.
"The guys did a good job with the set-up. The car was handling pretty well. It had a pretty serious push in a couple places, but overall the car was good.
"The wind wasn't a problem for me. It was more of a problem for Ralf, but I really didn't see an effect."
Ralf Kelleners: "From the beginning of the weekend we struggled to find the right balance, but we finally did find it. We suffered from a lack of speed today. I didn't have any contact with any other driver."
For more information, Feeds the Need's Web site is at www.feedstheneedracing.com. The Grand American section of Kodak's Web site is at www.Kodak.com/US/en/consumer/garr/.
Borcheller's Web site is at www.tborcheller.com and Kelleners' is at www.kelleners-sport.co. Other interesting information can be found at www.grandamerican.com, www.californiaspeedway.com, www.speedtv.com and www.restartcommunications.com.