SCC: Birmingham: Turner Motorsport race notes

TURNER M3s FEEL THE HEAT OF BATTLE AT BARBER BARBER MOTORSPORTS PARK, Birmingham, AL (July 23, 2008) -- Turner Motorsport M3s battled the heat and the Mustangs in the deep south this past weekend at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama. Both cars...

TURNER M3s FEEL THE HEAT OF BATTLE AT BARBER

BARBER MOTORSPORTS PARK, Birmingham, AL (July 23, 2008) -- Turner Motorsport M3s battled the heat and the Mustangs in the deep south this past weekend at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama. Both cars were contenders with the #96 Turner Motorsport M3 leading the race at one point. Bad luck and the intense heat conspired to keep either of the Turner cars from the race win. The #97 M3 led the way with a seventh-place finish.

Don Salama and Bryan Ortiz proved once again that the Turner Motorsport M3 is a force to reckon with when they qualified their car in the top ten for the 4th race this year. Ortiz started the race and kept the car far into the top ten, moving up to 5th place just before he was spun by a lapped car and lost several positions. Ortiz then made a green flag pit stop to hand the reins over to Salama. Without any more full-course cautions Salama was not able to catch the lead pack of Mustangs and the #97 M3 finished in seventh-place - their second top ten finish of the year.

The #96 M3 was also on a similar pace to the team car with Matt Alhadeff screaching through the top ten and eventually leading the race for two laps. With no caution periods, the team made a green-flag pit stop. Bill Auberlen took the wheel and continued the blistering pace until the clutch gave out and the car was forced to retire. However, they posted one of the race's ten fastest lap times.

Bill Auberlen, #96 Motul Lubricants/StopTech Brakes BMW M3: "You had to have horsepower to win here this weekend. Even with a car as well-balanced as the M3s are with great handling and awesome brakes - all of that just slides away in the heat we had. The only thing left was horsepower and the Fords had that in reserves. That's part of the nature of road racing though - you can be fast on some tracks like we were at Watkins Glen but the next track may play to someone else's strong suits."

- credit: tm

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Bill Auberlen , Don Salama , Bryan Ortiz
Teams Turner Motorsport