Watkins Glen II: Lexus preview

LEXUS TEAMS PREPARE FOR CROWN ROYAL 200 AT WATKINS GLEN TORRANCE, Calif. (Aug. 8 2006) -- After a weekend of growing pains at the Barber 250, where the Lexus-powered teams worked on new suspension set-ups to accompany the new Lexus 5.0-liter, V8...

LEXUS TEAMS PREPARE FOR CROWN ROYAL 200 AT WATKINS GLEN

TORRANCE, Calif. (Aug. 8 2006) -- After a weekend of growing pains at the Barber 250, where the Lexus-powered teams worked on new suspension set-ups to accompany the new Lexus 5.0-liter, V8 engine, the Lexus Daytona Prototype program is back on track at this weekend's Crown Royal 200 at Watkins Glen International.

While the new Lexus power-plant brought some performance gains, particularly in the area of mileage, it also brought some challenges to the teams in terms of setting up their race cars to go along with the engine's lower center of gravity and the re-proportioning of weight on the race car. As a result, each team struggled to find satisfactory grip on the race track.

"It'll be exciting going back to the Glen with the 5.0-liter Lexus engine because we're at the infancy of its development," said Scott Pruett, driver of the #01 CompUSA Lexus and the series all-time win leader. "The engine continues to run better. It (the engine) wants something a little bit different set-up wise, and as we head to the Glen, there are a number of things we can try there. As we get a few more miles under our belt, we're going to get better with the 5.0-liter, and I know TRD will continue to work to improve the overall package."

Pruett and Diaz will once again lead the way in their Ganassi Racing Lexus-Riley and will enter this weekend's contest third in points. The duo has earned three victories and seven top-three finishes this season. Pruett is the winningest driver in Daytona Prototype history with 10 victories -- all coming with Ganassi Racing, which has earned 11 of Lexus' 12 Rolex Series race triumphs.

The pair will be joined on the grid by the surging Michael Shank Racing team, which has registered top-10 finishes by both of its entries in the last three races.

Oswaldo Negri and Mark Patterson will team in the #60 Flight Options Lexus-Riley having registered four consecutive top-10 finishes, including a fourth at Watkins Glen in June. Patterson enters this weekend's action in ninth-place overall in points and leads the Jim Trueman Award standings.

Mike Borkowski will be back in the #6 Playboy Racing/Mears Lexus-Riley, and will have a new teammate this weekend as he's joined by Burt Frisselle, who campaigned with MSR during the 2004 season. Borkowski has been one of the hottest drivers on the circuit in recent races, earning a sixth and a seventh in the last two races. The Crown Royal 200 will mark the first of three races Burt and his brother, Brian Frisselle, will campaign through the remainder of the season. Brian will make his debut with the team at the following race in Sonoma.

With four wins this season, Lexus-powered entries have now won 12 races and 18 pole positions in 37 Rolex Series events since entering the series in 2004.

-credit: lexus motorsports

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Scott Pruett , Mike Borkowski , Oswaldo Negri Jr. , Mark Patterson , Brian Frisselle , Michael Shank
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Michael Shank Racing