DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., (Aug. 9, 2001) -- Racing isn't pretty. Just ask the Spirit of Daytona Beach about their experience during the 39th annual Rolex 24 At Daytona earlier this year at Daytona International Speedway. The No. 09 Flis Motorsports...
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., (Aug. 9, 2001) -- Racing isn't pretty. Just ask the Spirit of Daytona Beach about their experience during the 39th annual Rolex 24 At Daytona earlier this year at Daytona International Speedway.
The No. 09 Flis Motorsports Camaro, sponsored locally by X1-R, battled through several transmission problems and three crashes. By the end of the grueling 24-hour race, the Camaro looked more like a modified with body stripped of its nose, hood and driver's side exterior panel. Its No. 09 was written with tire crayon on the left side.
Even though the team and drivers Craig Conway, Doug Goad, Rick Maugeri and Eric Messley put together a second-place finish in the American GT class and 33rd overall, team manager Todd Flis is looking for a better racing experience at the "World Center of Racing" during the Sept. 14-16 Grand-Am Finale. The beat-up Camaro has been retired for a hot rod Corvette.
"Between getting crashed three times and the 20 hours of rain, it was definitely an exciting race," Flis said. "We knocked off two noses early and got taken out by a SportsRacer Prototype II car. The whole crew was physically exhausted after that one.
"It's going to be exciting coming back here with the Corvette. We did some testing at Daytona back in May at the SCCA Regional. The car really works well at Daytona. We've got some aero packages worked out. We're hoping to come back here and be really strong."
The Spirit of Daytona Beach will look to lock up their second straight AGT class championship with drivers Conway and Goad in the Grand-Am Finale Rolex Sports Car Series race on Sept. 16 at noon. Flis Motorsports currently leads the AGT class team standings by 14 points over Hamilton Safe Motorsports. Conway leads Goad by one point in the driver standings.
"We're not going to hold back anything," Flis said. "We want it all. We want the win. We want the pole. We want both championships. We're going to go for it all."
Flis, whose brother Troy serves as crew chief, wants both Conway and Goad to share the driver's AGT championship.
"Our team plans are for those guys to tie as co-champions," Flis said.
"Craig traditionally qualifies the car, so he gets a bonus point if he gets a pole. Doug finishes and he usually drives the most. They both equal out with one bonus point each. That's what our plan is -- tie as co-champions."
Fans can purchase tickets for the Grand-Am Finale by calling the Speedway ticket office at (386) 253-7223.