Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas drove their Lexus Riley to victory Saturday in the Rolex Sports Car Series Gainsco Grand Prix of Miami at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, giving Chip Ganassi Racing its second win in as many races this season. After...
Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas drove their Lexus Riley to victory Saturday in the Rolex Sports Car Series Gainsco Grand Prix of Miami at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, giving Chip Ganassi Racing its second win in as many races this season. After taking the lead for the final time on Lap 77, Pruett crossed the finish line 1.645 seconds ahead of Joey Hand's Alex Job Racing Porsche Crawford. The Ganassi duo led 51 of 99 laps in a caution-filed event that featured nine yellow flags for a total of 40 laps.
"The car was flawless," said Pruett after his 16th Rolex Series victory. "We really focused a lot of the setup on old tires. It really seemed like there was a lot of tire degradation here - especially on the rears. So the car wasn't so nice on restarts or the first 10 laps of a run. But once you settled in, the car was really hooked up. We've been having some drivability issues. We had them last year at the end of the season. We were fighting them at Daytona and in practice. But this is absolutely the best the engine has ever run."
Hand led 14 laps in the middle of the race, but could not hold off Pruett at the end of the race. "I wasn't going to let him go," said Hand. "The Ganassi team was fast all weekend and we hadn't had the car most of the weekend. Our car in the race was by far the best we had. It's no joke there. I was just throwing down qualifying laps as much as I could. I pretty much know (Pruett) was going to come. His car was really good on the banking and that was our weakest spot. I came up behind a Mustang and tried to pick it, but Pruett was already on the bottom and he went right on by me."
The No. 60 Michael Shank Racing Ford Riley survived a furious four-car dash to the checkered flag to end up third, followed by the No. 91 Pontiac Riley and the Sigalsport BMW Riley. Last year's series champions, Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty, finished sixth in the Gainsco Racing Pontiac Riley.
The pole sitting Brumos Porsche ran consistently in the top-three early in the race, but was sidelined on Lap 44 when David Donohue lost control of the car in Turn 1, sending him into the gravel trap after bouncing off the back of the brand new SunTrust Racing Pontiac Dallara, driven at the time by Michael Valiante. The SunTrust car finished 30th, three laps behind the winners.
The No. 07 Banner Racing Pontiac GXP.R of Kelly Collins and Paul Edwards won the GT class, finishing 1.675 seconds ahead of the No. 67 TRG Porsche shared by Spencer Pumpelly and Tim George, Jr. The second Pontiac GXP.R, driven by Jan Magnussen and Leighton Reese, rounded out the top-three in class.
The Rolex Series returns to the track April 19 in Mexico City.