Fontana: TRG preview

Fontana focus TRG has only two race starts at California Speedway, but the team made both races count. TRG won its first outing on the 2.8-mile infield road course in 2002 and scored a class podium finish in 2004. The team will field two Porsche...

Fontana focus

TRG has only two race starts at California Speedway, but the team made both races count. TRG won its first outing on the 2.8-mile infield road course in 2002 and scored a class podium finish in 2004. The team will field two Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars in this year's Rolex Sports Car Series race. Colin Braun of Ovalo, Texas, and Brad Coleman of Houston will drive the No. 64 Team16 car and 2004 Rolex Series SGS champions Marc Bunting of Monkton, Md., and Andy Lally of Dacula, Ga., will share the No. 65 Auto Gallery/TRG Porsche.

"Fontana is a pretty complex circuit," TRG owner Kevin Buckler said. "You've really got to be on your game in the banking, as we're not flat-out in the Porsches there. The track requires a lot of concentration, and I like that. Nearly all the braking zones have no visual references, so you're always busy. With the exception of the front straight, there's really no place to relax. You have to focus to put in a good lap here."

champion quest

Andy Lally is one of two drivers who have won a race and led the championship standings in three Rolex Series classes. His previous leads turned into championships -- SRPII in 2001 and SGS in 2004. He and Marc Bunting won at Homestead-Miami Speedway in March and now lead the Rolex Series GT standings, so Lally hopes the pattern will continue.

"It's a neat stat. It doesn't mean anything yet, but it's nice to be in the lead this early in the season," he acknowledged. "The championship is always the goal for me. I'm always going for the win, but there are some points in time when some things aren't going to happen and you have to take what you can get that day and think of the big picture. The big picture in this case is the championship, and that's what Marc and I both want this year."

tech talk

The high banks of the infield road courses on the Rolex Series schedule, such as California Speedway, Daytona International Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway, require a different tire setup than classic road courses. Jeff Braun, Team16's engineer, explained:

"Because of the steep banking at Homestead and Fontana and Daytona, the right-side tires are loaded very hard and for a long time. I run less right-side camber to keep the inside of the tire from overheating and failing. The Porsche also has a very high camber gain curve in the rear, adding to the dynamic camber the car has when on the banking. This requires me to run less camber on the right rear than the BMW cars would have to run. The result is the right side tires are standing up fairly straight. This reduces cornering grip in the infield part of the track, but it does help braking and power down."

-trg-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Colin Braun , Kevin Buckler , Andy Lally , Brad Coleman , Marc Bunting