SCC: Phoenix: Shane Lewis Thursday report

Shane Lewis fastest in Phoenix. PHOENIX, Thursday, April 18, 2002 - Shane Lewis, driving the ...

Shane Lewis fastest in Phoenix.

PHOENIX, Thursday, April 18, 2002 - Shane Lewis, driving the #43 Orison Marketing - Planet Earth Motorsports Corvette, set the fastest lap-time in both of today's practice sessions here at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR). Practicing for Saturday's Grand-Am Cup event, Lewis lapped the PIR road course at a time of 1 minute, 6.846 seconds in the first GSI-class practice of the day. The Jupiter, Florida-resident backed that up with a time of 1:06.186 in the day's second session. Lewis is the lead driver of the car with owner Joe Nonnamaker co-driving.

"We have been working hard for this," commented the elated Lewis. "When we unloaded the Orison Marketing - Planet Earth Vette from the trailer it was quick. We made a few adjustments during the first session and that really fine-tuned it. I knew it felt good but I was surprised myself to see it at the top of the leader board. To go back out and do it in the second session really showed all of the effort the Planet Earth guys have been putting into this. Regardless of what happens the next two days, this is a great accomplishment for the whole team. I said this car had what it took to win and I believe that we will get at least one of these races this year!"

The #43 Planet Earth Corvette, which will be donating 10% of its earnings this weekend to Earth Day causes, has run to two top-10 finishes in the first two rounds of Grand-Am Cup competition this season. Most recently, Lewis led the effort to a ninth-place at California Speedway. He had the car in the lead late in that race before mechanical problems sapped the car of its power. At the season-opening round in Daytona, the Corvette Z06 finished eighth in the high-speed GSI-class. Qualifying for Saturday afternoon's 250-mile/ 3-hour event will be on Saturday morning. One practice session is scheduled for Friday.

"After leading at Fontana I felt like we had a car capable of winning races," continued Lewis. "It'll be a tough fight to keep this in tomorrow's session because everyone will be gunning for us. However, I feel good about the set-up we have for this track. Joe and I are really looking forward to the race."

Shane Lewis has been racing since 1989. He is the 1998 Professional Sports Car Rising Star award winner and has multiple race wins in the IMSA Supercar and SCCA Pro series. Lewis has American Le Mans Series (ALMS) podium finishes at Silverstone, Nurburgring and last season at Portland. This former Daytona Endurance Champion has driven in 16 24-hour races including two 24 Hours of Le Mans, six 24 Hours of Daytona and six 12 Hours of Sebring. In 2002, he is competing as the lead driver for the #43 Orison Marketing - Planet Earth Corvette Z06 in the GSI-class of the Grand-Am Cup Street Stock Series and as lead pilot of the #45 American Viperacing Dodge Viper in the ALMS GTS-class.

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Shane Lewis , Joe Nonnamaker