GAINSCO team goes to the front with Gurney at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca MONTEREY, Calif. (Friday, May 18, 2007) -- Alex Gurney blistered the fresh pavement on the famed 2.23-mile Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, as he turned laps in the No. 99 GAINSCO...
GAINSCO team goes to the front with Gurney at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
MONTEREY, Calif. (Friday, May 18, 2007) -- Alex Gurney blistered the fresh pavement on the famed 2.23-mile Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, as he turned laps in the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Pontiac-powered Riley that were more than half a second quicker than anyone else in the Daytona Prototype field, as the GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing team prepares for Sunday's Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series U.S. Sports Car Invitational delivered by Luggage Express. Gurney, whose father Dan is on hand this weekend to cheer him on, set the pace at 1:20.980 at an average speed of 99.491 mph. Co-driver Jon Fogarty, who will qualify the car tomorrow, wasn't far behind -- and the duo is brimming with confidence. Fogarty will seek to keep the team's season-long front-row streak alive, and potentially even score his first career Rolex Series pole.
Tomorrow, the GAINSCO team will get a chance to make last-minute tweaks with a half-hour practice set to begin at 9 a.m., followed by Fogarty's 15-minute qualifying run, which goes green at 11:05 a.m.
Alex Gurney: "This is a great way to start off the weekend -- the GAINSCO Pontiac is really hooked up all around the track. We've even surprised ourselves a little bit but we'll take it for sure. The new track surface is all-around grippier, and thanks to our engineer Kyle Brannan, I think we've got a setup that takes advantage of that grip better than anyone else. We don't seem to have a weak spot anywhere so we'll just try to keep this going into tomorrow and give Jon a shot at the pole in qualifying."
Jon Fogarty: "It looks like everything that Alex and Kyle worked on this morning paid off. The GAINSCO car is working quite well and we're just gaining little bits everywhere. The new track surface is definitely different but it still retains that Laguna Seca character, with the same tricky spots, just a bit faster. I like that. One thing is, the surface is very abrasive, pulling the rubber right off the tires. We'll have to keep an eye on tire wear. We had a pretty productive test in Iowa last week and I think that helped us develop the car a bit. Now we just need to carry this speed through the weekend, because I want to take a shot at the pole."