TOP FIVE FINISH FOR NEW CENTURY MORTGAGE AFTER SIX HOURS AT THE GLEN WATKINS GLEN N.Y. (June 12, 2005) -- For the fourth time in six races this season, a fourth place qualifying effort, this time at the Saleen's Six Hours at the Glen, would...
TOP FIVE FINISH FOR NEW CENTURY MORTGAGE AFTER SIX HOURS AT THE GLEN
WATKINS GLEN N.Y. (June 12, 2005) -- For the fourth time in six races this season, a fourth place qualifying effort, this time at the Saleen's Six Hours at the Glen, would put the no.02 New Century Mortgage Lexus-Riley in position to battle for their first win. But even as Stefan Johansson and Cort Wagner were looking to at the very least repeat their second place podium performance of the previous race at the Six Hours of Mont Tremblant, overcoming the most difficult of weather and track conditions, as well as a malfunctioning radio throughout most of the race, proved to conspire against them and the duo would have to settle for a respectable top five finish.
The New Century Mortgage Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates team dealt with adversity throughout the endurance race starting with some aerodynamic push that dropped the no.02 Daytona Prototype back slightly before changes could be made on the first stop. Johansson took over the reins and made all the right moves to get back towards the front and the New Century Mortgage team was looking very good in terms of strategy, as they put themselves out of pit sequence with the leaders.
Wagner took over from his teammate and proceeded to take over the lead midway through the race but as a thick fog rolled in over the track and hampered by the lack of radio communication, miscommunication with the team under the resulting caution brought the no.02 Lexus Riley into the pits and the uncharacteristic error cost them the lead. Wagner attempted to regain the lead from fourth place, and while he had been the quickest car on the track, the rain began to come down harder and faster than before, and combined with little visibility and the loss of grip, attempts to challenge the leaders were thwarted. The no.02 New Century Lexus Riley would cross the finish line in fifth place.
"The New Century Mortgage team is terribly disappointed with our result today because we really felt we had this win," said Stefan Johansson. "That last half hour everything just unfolded contrary to what we had expected. Every race we have had a chance to bring home a win. We're just going to have to dig even deeper for the next race."
Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Luis Diaz and Scott Pruett finished third in the no.01 CompUSA Lexus-Riley.
Fans of New Century Mortgage Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates can follow the no.02 New Century Mortgage Lexus-Riley all season long by logging onto the Rolex Sports Car Series website at www.grandamerican.com for free live timing, and keep up with the team's successes throughout the 2005 season by logging onto the official website at www.chipganassiracing.com for news, features, photos and much more. Next up for the team is the Brumos Porsche 250 on Thursday, June 30th (LIVE, SPEED Channel, 8:00 pm ET) at Daytona International Speedway for Round 7 of the Rolex Sports Car Series.