Sears Point: Chip Ganassi Racing race report

COMPUSA TEAM CLAIMS SERIES-LEADING FIFTH WIN OF SEASON IN SONOMA SONOMA, Calif. (August 26, 2006) -- CompUSA Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates pilot Scott Pruett took over for co-driver Luis Diaz on Lap 25 of 99, built up a 40-second lead...

COMPUSA TEAM CLAIMS SERIES-LEADING FIFTH WIN OF SEASON IN SONOMA

SONOMA, Calif. (August 26, 2006) -- CompUSA Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates pilot Scott Pruett took over for co-driver Luis Diaz on Lap 25 of 99, built up a 40-second lead during an alternate pit strategy and survived a late stop to beat the no.4 Pontiac-Crawford to the line by 2.22 seconds to win the Rolex Series inaugural event at Infineon Raceway. It is the team's second win in a row after capturing the Crown Royal 200 two weeks ago at Watkins Glen.

Diaz started the 2:45 sprint race from the fourth position, but was dropped back to 19th after contact with the no.75 Krohn Racing machine for the second time in three races. Diaz refired the no.01 CompUSA Lexus-Riley after the Lap 21 incident, and turned the car over to hometown favorite Pruett during the first of four stops on the day.

Pruett restarted in 17th, and worked his way up to the lead on Lap 74 after being forced into an off-sequence pit strategy. With one stop still looming in the distance, the 2004 Rolex Series champion built up a gap that allowed him to come in for a splash of fuel on Lap 89, and still come out in front of the leaders.

Pruett survived a late-race restart when the field returned to green on Lap 95, and put the finishing touches on the team's series-leading (and series record-tying) fifth win of the season.

It is the no.01 car's 12th win in only 39 career Grand American starts -- a winning percentage of 0.31. More importantly, Pruett and Diaz vault to second place in the Rolex Series Driver point standings, pulling within 19 points of leader Jorg Bergmeister (437-418). The win also takes them from third to first in the Team category, now eight points ahead of Bergmeister's no.76 Daytona Prototype as the series enters the 14th and final round of the 2006 schedule.

The no.01 CompUSA Lexus-Riley has finished on the podium in eight of 13 races in 2006, and the victory furthers the team's position as the most successful team in Daytona Prototype history-- holding records in wins (13), poles (19) and podium finishes (29). Pruett continues to be the most successful Daytona Prototype pilot ever with career records for wins (12), pole positions (8) and podium finishes (24).

Pruett pulls within one win of James Weaver's all-time Rolex Series record for victories (13), while Lexus takes a two-point lead over Pontiac (486-484) in the manufacturer's race.

Next up for Pruett and Diaz and the no.01 team is the season finale at Miller Motorsports Park next Saturday, September 2nd on the 4.5-mile permanent road course in Tooele, Utah. Catch the team in action LIVE on SPEED Channel September 2nd at 2:00 ET (PART I) and at 6:00 ET (PART II).

CGRFS Driver Quoteboard

SCOTT PRUETT "We got put behind a little bit early on in the race. The guys did a great job on the pit stop, sending me out there in front. It feels great to get this win in front of the home crowd. There's nothing like winning on your home court. All these things together make this sweet. We dug deep to pull a strategy that would give us the best chance to win."

LUIS DIAZ "It was a very hard stint for me. We got hit from behind in Turn 7 and had to come back from that. This team is the best in the world and Scott is the best teammate I could ask for. Everyone on this CompUSA Chip Ganassi Racing team did a great job the whole day and this is a great win."

-credit: cgr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers James Weaver , Scott Pruett , Luis Diaz , Jörg Bergmeister , Chip Ganassi , Felix Sabates
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Krohn Racing