VIR: GM Racing qualifying report

Krohn Racing On Pole At VIR - Pontiac Pole Streak At Four Collins and GXP.R on Third Row in GT Alton, Virginia, April 28, 2007 - Colin Braun drove the No. 75 Krohn Racing Riley Daytona Prototype (DP) to the team's second pole position of the...

Krohn Racing On Pole At VIR - Pontiac Pole Streak At Four
Collins and GXP.R on Third Row in GT

Alton, Virginia, April 28, 2007 - Colin Braun drove the No. 75 Krohn Racing Riley Daytona Prototype (DP) to the team's second pole position of the year for tomorrow's running of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve VIR 400 at Virginia International Raceway. Kelly Collins piloted the No. 07 Banner Engineering Pontiac GXP.R to a fifth place qualifying effort in GT. The GT race will run at 4:30 p.m. this afternoon.

Braun and his Pontiac powered Krohn Racing Riley kept the pole streak intact for Pontiac at four in as many races. The 18-year old Texan put in a time of 1:45.003 and a speed of 112 mph. Braun and teammate Max Papis will share the front row with the No. 99 GAINSCO Pontiac Riley of Jon Fogarty and Alex Gurney.

"We started the weekend a little off," Braun said. "We thought we would unload with a little better car, so the team has had to do a lot of work all day. The work paid off in qualifying, the car was really good. I can get the Pontiac power down off of the turn and the car is good through the fast stuff. The track lends itself to close racing, some cars are good through the fast stuff and some faster down the straights."

Jon Fogarty helped keep the momentum going for the GAINSCO Pontiac. Fogarty put in a time of 1:45.153 good for a front row starting position. The GAINSCO team also has a qualifying record of four front row starts in DP, with a pole position at the Daytona 24.

"Another front row start," Fogarty said. "I wanted to get the pole, to be able match Alex as he has one at Daytona this year. The front row is a great place to start at this track. I like to race with Colin, we started this way at Mexico City. Tire management will be key to having a good day tomorrow."

New to the DP category is Jean-Francois Dumoulin. Moving up from the GT ranks Dumoulin qualified the No. 11 Samax Pontiac Riley in ninth place with a time of 1:47.198.

"This is my first time driving a DP car," Dumoulin said. "We have been improving every session. I had a pretty good lap, we are not quite getting 100% out of the car yet, but we are close. We have had limited track time, so I am hoping to be stronger as the race progresses tomorrow."

New to the Pontiac fold this weekend is Tommy Constantine and his No. 53 Playboy Pontiac Riley. Constantine qualified his DP entry in 17th place with a time of 1:49.614.

"I haven't been in a DP car since Barber last year," Constantine said. "I hadn't sat in the car until practice this morning. We only ran about seven laps before qualifying. I made a slight mistake on my fast qualifying lap and left about a second out there, I think we could have been in the top 10. We are making good power and are getting more comfortable with the car each lap."

In GT, the Banner Racing Pontiac GXP.R driven by Kelly Collins will start from the third row based on his 1:55.443 qualifying time.

"The car is really handling here," Collins said. "This is a good track for our GXP.R until we get out on the straight and we get pulled by our competition by four car lengths off of the corner. We can make up some room under braking, but we still lacking down the straights."

In the team No. 06 Banner Engineering GXP.R, Tim Lewis Jr. put in a time of 1:56.183 and will go away from the start from the fifth row.

"I thought the car was a little better this morning," Lewis said. "I am not sure if the weather changed or that we made adjustments to our handling for old tires. I think I could have been up toward the top five. I hit some traffic on my fast lap and didn't want to abuse the tires. We are looking good for the race."

James Gue, new to the Racers Edge Motorsports team this weekend, posted a time of 1:56.279 and will start from the sixth row today.

"Qualifying was not very good for us," Gue said. "I lined up early and went out like third, but couldn't get a clean lap. Then the yellow came and that reduced our session. I think I could have done a lap in the mid 55s. The team has made good improvement with the GXP.R and I hope we can give them a strong finish today."

-credit: gm racing

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Alex Gurney , Jon Fogarty , Colin Braun , Kelly Collins , James Gue , Jean-Francois Dumoulin , Tim Lewis , Tommy Constantine
Teams Krohn Racing , Racers Edge Motorsports