Michael Shank Racing looking for Mt. Tremblant momentum (Columbus, OH)- May 17 -- With two consecutive top-five finishes, including a podium appearance at California Speedway, Michael Shank Racing is looking forward to this weekends '6 Heures du...
Michael Shank Racing looking for Mt. Tremblant momentum
(Columbus, OH)- May 17 -- With two consecutive top-five finishes, including a podium appearance at California Speedway, Michael Shank Racing is looking forward to this weekends '6 Heures du Circuit Mont-Tremblant' for round five of the 2005 Rolex Sports Car Series. After a slow start to the season, the strong race finishes have helped the team make a big move up into the top ten points standings and looking for more.
Situated north of Montreal, Circuit Mont-Tremblant has twice played host to Formula 1 events as well as being the first race for the legendary Can-Am series. The 15-turn, 2.65-mile road course rewards bravery with some dauntingly quick corners and elevation changes.
The race is the first of two six-hour races during the Rolex season, and team owner Mike Shank has high hopes for the race weekend.
"Getting a couple of top-fives in a row and Oz taking the pole at Laguna has helped our confidence heading up to Tremblant," said Shank. "We know we have a competitive package and are just trying to find little increments of improvement anywhere we can, because in a longer race like this one with the competition being so close, those little improvements can make a big difference. We'd like to keep moving up in the points, so we just want to be in the hunt all weekend and hopefully we can get another good result."
The track is a familiar one for driver Mike Borkowski, as he won the 2003 running of the 6 hours at 'Le Circuit', and he is looking forward to racing at the magnificent facility once again.
"The track is really excellent; a great natural road course that has some very fast corners but still has room to pass," said Borkowski. "With the competition level so high in Rolex, there really isn't any opportunity to take it easy at any point of the race, because if you do, you'll be a lap down and your chance at a good result will be gone, so we'll be pushing the whole six hours to make sure we can be right there at the finish."
Borkowski will be joined for the event by Kenny Wilden and Duncan Dayton, who drove with the team in this year's Rolex 24 at Daytona.
Road & Track 250 6 Mears Motor Coach Pontiac-Riley
Qualify 9th , Finish 5th
Michael Shank Racing finished in fifth with the Mears Motor Coach Pontiac Riley after Kenny Wilden started from ninth and fought up the order despite suffering a cut tire from contact. Wilden handed the battled car over to Mike Borkowski, who managed to hang on and bring the car home in fifth place, marking the second consecutive top-five for the team. The sister #60 Lexus-Riley car of Oswaldo Negri and Mark Patterson qualified on pole position, led early, and then fought back after falling a lap down to finish in ninth position on the lead lap.
Michael Shank Racing was formed in 1989 when Michael Shank first began driving racing cars professionally, taking the award as SCCA-Ohio Valley Region's Novice Driver of the Year. Shank retired from the cockpit in 1997 after moving up the motorsports ladder to focus his efforts on running the team, which quickly found success in the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship, with several race wins leading Shank to be named as Team Owner of the Year twice in four years. MSR has campaigned drivers including Johnny Rutherford Jr., Kenny Wilden, and 2001 and 2002 Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish, Jr. MSR joined the Rolex ranks in 2004, leading the first race it entered and making two podium appearances with drivers Burt Frisselle and Oswaldo Negri, Jr.