VIR: TRG qualifying report

George is TRG's top-qualifier for Bosch Engineering 250 at VIR ALTON, Va. - Tim George was TRG's fastest qualifier in today's Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16 GT qualifying for tomorrow's Bosch Engineering...

George is TRG's top-qualifier for Bosch Engineering 250 at VIR

ALTON, Va. - Tim George was TRG's fastest qualifier in today's Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16 GT qualifying for tomorrow's Bosch Engineering 250 at Virginia International Raceway.AJR Homestead

George will start 14th in the No. 67 Tampico Porsche GT3 Cup thanks to a fast qualifying time of 1:55.404 (102.007 mph). George will co-drive with Spencer Pumpelly.

"We spent all morning setting the car up," George said. "My first time on the track was during the Akin Award session. Given the amount of track time I had today, I am pretty happy with the effort. I had a race last year in KONI Challenge so that experience really helped out. I was working on getting up the stamina to get through the Esses. I am starting in good company tomorrow. I am going to focus on running a good stint and turn the car over to Spencer in a good position."

Driving the No. 66 Mitchell Rubber/Marquis Jet/Elf Oils/IPC Porsche GT3 Cup, Ted Ballou turned a quick time of 1:56.124 (1021.374) despite backing his machine into the Esses tire wall on lap four of his qualifying run. Ballou and his teammate Bryce Miller will start 18th on the grid.

"I had just put in an O.K. lap and was trying to do better when the car began oversteering," Ballou said about his qualifying run. "I lost it in the Esses and hit the tire barrier. It was pretty disappointing."

Jim Lowe recorded a fast time of 1:58.269 (99.536 mph) around the 3.27-mile, 17-turn road course and will start 21st with co-pilot Jim Pace in the No. 64 SRS/Globus/Adopt A Pig Porsche GT3 Cup.

"We had about ten laps of practice all day," Lowe said. "We had a water hose come loose, so we lost a lot of track time repairing that today right before qualifying. Jim Pace handled the last minute setup before qualifying. The car handled better and we went faster."

RJ Valentine drove his No. 68 CGR/Maxter/Rotax/MBA Group/F1 Air Porsche GT3 Cup to the 23rd quickest qualifying time with a 1:59.237 (98.738 mph). Valentine will co-drive with Bryan Sellers.

"The car between this morning and this afternoon was a lot better," Valentine said. "If I could have gotten some more track time, I could have done better in qualifying. We are that much closer to the front based upon the good work on the car since this morning. I am pretty optimistic about the race. I am going to keep it in contention on the lead lap and hand it over to the master, Brian. We will do well. He is terrific and he knows how to go fast."

"All the guys did a good job in qualifying," Buckler said. "Ted had a brush with the tire wall, so he wasn't able to show his true speed. He and Bryce will have to work hard in the race tomorrow and strategy will play a big part in that. We took a little more time on the 67 to get the setup just right for the race. That cost Tim some track time, but he did a good job in qualifying. Jim Lowe has a lot of laps here at VIR and that paid off as we had to repair a water line on the car costing them some track time earlier. RJ is a rock. He and Bryan will have a good day tomorrow."

George and Pumpelly are currently third in the Rolex Sports Car Series GT Driver's Championship point standings with 81 points, while Ballou and Miller are currently in eighth with 75 points. TRG is currently second (81 points) and fifth (75 points) in the Rolex Series GT Team Championship point standings.

-credit: tgr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Spencer Pumpelly , Jim Pace , Bryan Sellers , Jim Lowe , Ted Ballou , Bryce Miller