Yates Closes Season on Positive Note; Looks Forward to 2005 POMONA, Calif., Nov. 14, 2004 - What had become a dreary Pro Stock season for Jim Yates and his Sea Ray Boats/B&W Pontiac Grand Am team brightened considerably Saturday and Sunday in...
Yates Closes Season on Positive Note; Looks Forward to 2005
POMONA, Calif., Nov. 14, 2004 - What had become a dreary Pro Stock season for Jim Yates and his Sea Ray Boats/B&W Pontiac Grand Am team brightened considerably Saturday and Sunday in the Auto Club Finals at Pomona Raceway.
Yates qualified 14th (6.758 seconds at 203.89 mph) on his final try Saturday afternoon, gaining a position in the top 16 for the first time in six races and learning more about car's setup. On race day, Yates believed he had an opportunity to upset Steve Johns.
"We had a baseline to start from and we gave it a good shot," Yates said of his Sunday effort. But the car spun the tires in low gear, slowing him to a 6.782 at 204.54 mph and Johns won with a 6.732 at 204.11.
Yates was still impressed with the car's outing.
"The car ran well," he said. "It was sixth-quickest down the back half of the track in the first round so things are looking up. The right lane was pretty slippery and now we must get the power to the ground. We are enthused with the speed we ran and the engine package we have.
"We'll have a new Jerry Haas-built car and we are excited about going testing for the 2005 season as soon as the car is ready," Yates continued. "Our focus now is working on our engine program. This engine ran well and this will be our baseline engine as we work toward making more horsepower."
Yates has installed an engine dynamometer at his shop and plans to put it to good use. "We have all the equipment we need at home to go forward."
Yates' final total of 607 points placed him 16th overall and marked the first time he hasn't finished in the top 10 since 1993. The winter's worth of work, he believes, will get him back up there in 2005.