Las Vegas Press Notes 10-50, Friday

Press Notes 10-50, Friday 19 September, 1997 10. Good Morning. Welcome to the second day of official activity for the SportsCar Grand Prix presented by FAO Schwarz. Today's activities include practice and qualifying for all five SportsCar...

Press Notes 10-50, Friday

19 September, 1997

10. Good Morning. Welcome to the second day of official activity for the SportsCar Grand Prix presented by FAO Schwarz. Today's activities include practice and qualifying for all five SportsCar series, followed by round seven of the SPEEDVISION Cup for Stock SportsCars.

11. Repairs were made overnight to turn five where the pavement was deteriorating. The area of asphalt that was coming up was removed and replaced with concrete.

12. 8:40 am, GREEN FLAG starts a 25-minute practice session for the Black Magic Pro Series - At 8:55 am, the fastest in the session so far is #83 Mike Davies with a fast lap of 1:22.1 - 9:05 am, CHECKERED FLAG ends the session. Fastest three cars in the session are: #83 Mike Davies, 1:22.105-85.061 mph; #7 John Mirachi, 1:22.176-84.988 mph; David Tenney, 1:22.289-84.871 mph - The top ten cars are all within one second of each other. QUOTE FROM MIKE DAVIES, fastest qualifier: "This morning's session was really frustrating and ugly for me. I broke an axle, the car was handling badly and I almost spun out and hit someone. The crew will work hard and we'll have things back together and ready for this afternoon's qualifying."

13. 9:20am, GREEN FLAG starts a 25-minute practice session for the Ferrari Challenge - 9:40 am, BLACK FLAG stops the session to remove the #48 Ferrari 355 of Carlos Hank, Jr-.#76 car of Tom Papadopoulos is fastest with a time of 1:20.687-86.556 mph.

14. 10:00 am, GREEN FLAG starts a 45-minute practice session for the Exxon World SportsCar Championship - Ten minutes into the session, the fastest car is the #16 Dyson Ford R&S MK III with Elliott Forbes-Robinson driving. EFR turned a fast lap of 1:07.122-104.05 mph - Fifteen minutes into the session, the fastest is now Wayne Taylor, in the #1 Oldsmobile R&S MK III, with a fast lap of 1:06.038-105.76 mph.

15. 10:16 am, BLACK FLAG/CHECKERED FLAG stops the session when #62 Mazda Kudzu goes off course at infield section at Turn 7-A problem with the gearbox stranded the car with Paul Dibban driving-the gearbox will be fixed before the afternoon qualifying session-10:24 am, GREEN FLAG restarts the session-#30 Ferrari 333SP is fastest car in session with Andrea Montermini driving, with a time of 1:05.863-106.03 mph, followed by #1 Oldsmobile R&S MK III of Wayne Taylor, who was less than 1/100th of a second behind at 1:05.930-105.93 mph and #16 Ford R&S MK III of Elliott Forbes-Robinson with time of 1:05.969-105.86 mph.


EXXON WORLD SPORTSCAR CHAMPIONSHIP CAR CHANGE 17 ADD Jon Field/Dublin, OH 28 ADD Howard Katz/Palisades, NY & Butch Brickell/Miami, FL 60 ADD Shane Donley/Las Vegas, NV 63 ADD Eliseo Salazar/Santiago, Chile

EXXON SUPREME GT SERIES Presented by Virgin Interactive CAR CLASS CHANGE 04 GTS-3 ADD Max Schmidt/Edwards, CO & Rusty Schmidt/Edwards, CO 5 GTS-3 ADD John Paul Jr./West Palm Beach, FL 12 GTS-3 ADD John Morton/El Segundo,CA & Ross Thompson 28 GTS-3 ADD Marvin Epps & Craig Stanton 77 GTS-3 ADD Matthew Cohen/New York, NY & Pete Halsmer/Bloomfield, MI 93 GTS-3 ADD David Loring

SPEEDVISION CUP CAR CLASS CHANGE 54 GS ADD Scooter Gabel/Tampa, FL & Terry Borcheller/Phoenix, AZ 57 GS ADD Ed Zabinski/Kent, WA & Karen Clark/Atlanta, GA 63 GS ADD Geoff Auberlen/Redondo Beach, FL & Javier Quiros/San Jose, Costa Rica 72 GS ADD Bill Auberlen/Redondo Beach, FL & Chris Miller/Fullerton, CA 77 GS SCRATCH ENTRY 12 S ADD Chris Neville/Scottsdale, AR, Taz Harvey/Danville, CA & Jason Potter/Oxford, OH 12 S CHANGE car number to 24 03 T ADD John Norris/Culver City, CA, Craig Stanton/Seal Beach, CA, Marc Jones & Mark Webber/Hidden Hills, CA 07 T ADD Mark Webber, Mark Jones, John Norris & Craig Stanton 31 T ADD Terry Earwood/Sebring, FL, Paul Arnold/Franklin, TN & James Matthews/Warsaw, NC 34 T ADD Barry Waddell/Evansville, IN, James Matthews/Warsaw, NC 99 T ADD David Friedman/Milville, NY, DELETE Scott Hartman 8 C ADD Roger Foo/Hayward, CA, Kenzo Sudo/Fremont, CA & Taz Harvey/Danville, CA 23 C ADD Lance Stewart/Palm Beach Gardens, FL & John Bourassa/Jupiter Island FL 48 C SCRATCH ENTRY 57 C CHANGE number to 6 67 C ADD Manny Matz /Somers, NY, David Delgenio/Acworth, NH & John Bourassa/Jupiter Island, FL 67 C CHANGE NUMBER on Miata to 7 95 C ADD Alan Himes/Falls Church, VA, Paul Moorcomes/Highland, MD

96 C ADD Joe Jordan/Orange, CA, Charles Espenlaub/Lutz, FL, Dennis Marquet, Dave Alheim/Mountain View CA and Jim Jordan/Sacramento, CA 96 C ADD Joe Jordan/Orange, CA, Charles Espenlaub/Lutz, FL, Dennis Marquet, Dave Alheim/Mountain View CA and Jim Jordan/Sacramento, CA 97 C ADD Joe Jordan/Orange, CA, Charles Espenlaub/Lutz, FL, Dennis Marquet, and Jim Jordan/Sacramento, CA


BLACK MAGIC PRO SERIES CAR CHANGE 05 ADD Jim Porterfield 4 SCRATCH ENTRY 38 ADD Victor Calderon/Sarasota, FL 83 ADD Mike Davies/Deland, FL

17. Dale White, of Las Vegas, Nevada, is making his first SportsCar start in the #50 Westward Ho Casino Chevrolet Camaro. Though White has yet to drive in SportsCar, he is an accomplished off road racer, having won the Baja 1000 twice and he is the current SCORE Class 8 points leader: "We're taking the slow approach and trying to be smart. Easing into it and learning the ropes first is the way we tend to do things. There is no point in being stupid. We have a long career ahead of us -Our Chevy is running pretty good. We made a carburetor adjustment last night in the wrong direction. We'll fix that and it will be right on - The track is just awesome. This is our first time here and both Mike (Petersen, co-driver) and I are extremely excited. It is a great road course and the race should really be a good show."

18. 11 am, GREEN FLAG drops to start half-hour practice session for the Exxon Supreme GT Series-Ford Panoz were the fastest two cars in session with the #96 GTS-1 car of Doc Bundy setting fastest lap with time of 1:08.054-102.62 mph, followed by #66 car with time of 1:09.249-100.85 mph-third fastest was GTS-1 Porsche 911 Turbo driven by Andy Pilgrm in a time of 1:09.249-100.75 mph.

19. 1:30 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to start qualifying session for SPEEDVISION CUP for Stock SportsCars' Sports, Touring and Compact classes-Anthony Lazzaro qualified the #81 (Sports) BMW is with a time of 1:27.278-80.020 mph,-John Norris qualified on the pole in the Touring Class in the #03 Nissan 240SX with a best lap of 1:29.305-78.203 mph-#97 Mazda Miata, with Charles Espenlaub driving, first in the Touring class with a best lap of 1:32.195-75.752 mph-David Murry won his second consecutive pole in the Grand Sports class with a time of 1:22.836-84.311 mph in the #3 Pontiac Firebird Formula.

20. DRIVER QUOTES: Anthony Lazzaro: "I would have preferred that we had used the original road course here, but we can work with this one. This is a wonderful facility they have built and, overall, I think the track layout will work well for the BMWs."

21. John Norris: "this is my fourth straight front row start. Marc Joneds, my teammate, helped me on the drafting and that was all it took to get the pole."

22. Charles Espenlaub: "I got a lucky draft from our team car and, like John said, that was all it took. I think the draft will work well tonight in the race, too."

23. DAVID MURRY QUOTE: "We waited until everybody else had gone out and was almost done with their fast lap before we left the pits. What we wanted was the one clean lap. The tires were just starting to get heat in them and the water temperature was nothing - nothing to us is about 180 degrees. The draft doesn't work for us here like it did at a fast track like Mosport. Top speed for the Pontiac is about 148 mph, which is a mile or two faster than my GTS-3 car."-second fastest qualifier in GS was Eric Van Cleef in the Toyota Supra Turbo, the 12th straight front-row start for Van Cleef, who celebrated his 36th birthday three days ago.

24. 2:30 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to start the 15-minute session to permit Exxon World SportsCar teams to scuff in tires before qualifying-2:45 pm, BLACK FLAG ends session.

25. 2:50 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to start 15-minute qualifying session for Exxon World SportsCar Championship teams-#30 MOMO Ferrari 333SP with Andrea Montermini fastest early in the session, followed by the #16 Ford R&S MK III with Butch Leitzinger driving and the #1 Oldsmobile R&S MK III with Wayne Taylor driving-#16 Ford R&S MK III with Leitzinger driving takes the pole with quick lap late in session-time was 1:05.117-107.25 mph.

26. DRIVER QUOTE: Butch Leitzinger: "It was a bit of a crapshoot out there today because all the teams lost a lot of track time yesterday. We lucked out because we were able to get a clean lap immediately and then I came in and when we went back out I was able to get another clear lap right away-We all still have a lot work to do because night racing will make a big difference to the car. The cooler air will affect the downforce."

27. TheWSC #63 NEC Cellular Mazda Kudzu of Jim Downing/Eliseo Salazar didn't get out for qualifying due to a gearbox problem that seemed minor in the morning practice session but turned out to be more serious than expected. However, the problem is not terminal and the crew will have it fixed by day's end.

28. 3:30 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to start the 25-minute qualifying session for Black Magic Pro Series-session uneventful-#83 Toyota of Mike Davies is the fastest qualifier with a lap time of 1:21.548-85.642 mph, followed by Series points leader Mike Anderson's #42 car with a time of 1:21.931-85.242 mph.

29. DRIVER QUOTE: Mike Davies: "The track is real fast, with a lot of straightaways and we're able to draft. Tomorrow's race will probably be a NASCAR-style race using drafting and should be close. I had a disastrous practice this morning with a broken axle and used up my tires. We put on sticker (new) tires and the car had a little push. I turned the fast lap and then I heard Mike Anderson had turned one faster. After hearing that, I drove the car a little harder and improved my time even more. This is my fifth pole of the year and I have to thank my crew guy, Ross House, for all his hard work in getting the car ready for qualifying. DePrisa Motorsports, Goddess Foods and Jones Aviation have been behind me all year.

"Tomorrow's race should be close with a 3-4 car train (Davies, Anderson, Mirachi and Tenney) and we should all be within a second or so of each other. In regards to leading at the beginning of the last lap: there's been a lot discussion whether there is an advantage or not because of the long straightaway. If you're not leading, the option is still there to get by someone."



CAR CLASS CHANGE 67 C Mazda Miata car number changed to 7 56 GS CHANGE number to 6

31. 4:30 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to begin 20-minute qualifying session for Exxon Supreme GT5 Series Presented by Virgin Interactive cars in the GTS-3 class-David Murry, driving the #39 Porsche 911 to pole in class, his second of the day.

32. The #00 Audi 4 has been moved to the back of the Touring Class grid in the SPEEDVISION Cup race for having an illegal intercooler. The #75(C) Nissan 200SX SE-R has been moved to the back of the grid for not having a technical inspection sticker.

33. 5 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to start the 20-minute qualifying session for Exxon Supreme GT Series Presented by Virgin Interactive GTS-1 and GTS-2 cars...Allan McNish, making his debut with the Rohr team, qualified the #01 Porsche 911 Turbo on the pole with a time of 1:07.361-103.68 mph. In GTS-2 class, Price Cobb was fastest in the #99 Porsche Turbo with a time of 1:12.230-96.691 mph. McNish is the official test driver for the Porsche factory and also does testing for the McLaren and Benetton Formula 1 teams-Price Cobb came out of retirement to drive this weekend-it's the first time this season Porsches have won the pole position in all three GT classes in the same event. McNish was first overall, Cobb was eighth fastest and Murry was 11th overall.

34. DRIVER QUOTES: Allan McNish, #01 Rohr Porsche 911 GT1, GTS-1 pole winner: "This is my first experience in driving a course like Las Vegas and I have never driven on a banked circuit before. I was trying all kinds of lines, both high and low, to see what was better but frankly the car is so good I don't think it makes any difference to us."

35. Price Cobb, #99 Quebecor Printing Porsche 911 Turbo, GTS-2 pole winner: " This being retired was getting boring although we have a newspaper up in Colorado that kept us a bit busy. I hate to say it, but you might be seeing more of me in the future. Racing has been good to me and now it's time to repay some favors from the past. I appreciate the opportunity the Schumacher team has given me this weekend."

36. David Murry, #39 Carolina Turkey Porsche 911: "Winning the pole wasn't as easy as it looked. The Porsches seem to be able to get the power down here better than the BMWs. Jim Matthews, the team owner, has been very supportive of our efforts all season."

37. 5:30 pm, GREEN FLAG starts the Ferrari Challenge qualifying session - Carlos Hank Jr., who was involved in an incident in this morning's practice session, will qualify the #48 Ferrari as his primary car, the #47 Ferrari, cannot be repaired - 5:50 pm, CHECKERED FLAG, the 20-minute qualifying session is run without incident. The pole winner is Tom Papadopoulos with a fast lap of 1:19.357-88.007 mph.



EXXON SUPREME GT SERIES PRESENTED BY VIRGIN INTERACTIVE CAR CLASS CHANGE 82 GTS-1 ADD Scott Harrington/Indianapolis, IN 01 GTS-1 CORRECT ENTRY: Allan McNish, Dumfries, Scotland, Porsche 911 GT1 56 GTS-2 ADD Kelly Collins/Corona del Mar, CA CAR CLASS CHANGE 25 GS ADD Randy Pobst/Melbourne, FL 29 GS ADD Chuck Cottrell/Franktown, CO, Bernardo De Sa'Nogueira/Portugal DELETE Randy Pobst 33 GS ADD Marty Miller/Riverside, CA 54 GS ADD Javier Quiros/Costa Rica and Bill Auberlen/Redondo Beach, CA 63 GS ADD Bill Auberlen/Redondo Beach, CA, Scooter Gabel/Tampa, FL, and Terry Borcheller/Phoenix, AZ. DELETE Jeff Auberlen 72 GS ADD Chris Miller/Fullerton, CA and Bill Auberlen, Redondo Beach, FL 24 S ADD Darrin Law/Phoenix, AZ and DELETE Jason Potter 51 S ADD Taz Harvey/Danville, CA 28 T ADD Gary Bensen/Minneapolis, MN 42 T ADD Shane Lewis/Jupiter, FL 67 C CHANGE car number to #7

39. 7:40 pm, GREEN FLAG drops to start the 3-hour Exxon Supreme GT Series Presented by Virgin Interactive race-59 cars take the green flag-#88 GS Toyota Supra Turbo with Chuck Goldsborough driving, overtakes pole-sitter #3GS Pontiac Firebird Formula of David Murry-#21GS Ford Mustang smoking-#37GS Pontiac Firebird dumping fuel, meatballed, into pits to have gas cap tightened-#88GS Toyota Supra Turbo warned for not having taillights but retains lead at 15-minute mark-#25GS Ford Mustang Cobra spins off at Turn 5, back on track.

40. #4GS Pontiac Firebird Formula limps back to pits with flat right rear tire, replaces tire and returns to the track-#49C Honda Civic del Sol retires with engine problems at 40-minute mark-#25GS Ford Mustang Cobra forced to retire when crew member crosses track to help driver work on stalled car-#78C Nissan 200SX and #88GS Toyota Supra Turbo warned about not having rear taillights.

41. AT THE ONE HOUR mark, the leaders in class are:

GS- #88 Toyota Supra Turbo, #54 BMW M3, #70Mazda RX-7 Turbo S- #81 BMW 328is, #86Honda Prelude VTEC, #59BMW328is T- #03 Nissan 240Sx, #38Honda Prelude, #43Mazda MX-6 C- #97Mazda Miata, #75Nissan 200SX SE, #78Nissan 200SX

42. #88GS Toyota Supra Turbo pits to repair rear taillights, losing overall lead and dropping to 10th place on lap #46-#21GS Ford Mustang Cobra retires with blown head gasket-#70GS Toyota Supra aTurbo pits on lap #54 to replace right side tires, fuel, driver change, Ham out, Tremblay in-#46GS Ford Mustang Cobra pits, on lap 54, fuel, tires, Pilgrim in, Priestley-#81S BMW328si pits with brake problems, crew changes calipers.

43. #17GS Ford Mustang Cobra takes lead on lap 59-#32GS Pontiac Firebird Formula goes behind the wall.


GS- 88 Toyota Supra Turbo, #54 BMW M3, #70Mazda RX-7 Turbo S- #86Honda Prelude VTEC, #59BMW328is, #9BMW328is T- #03Nissan 240SX, #38Honda Prelude, #43Mazda MX-6 C- #75Nissan 200SXSE, #97Mazda Miata, #78Nissan 200SX

45. #16GS Porsche 968 given 10-second penalty for leaving pit while still refuelling-#08GS Pontiac Firebird and #09GS Pontiac Firebird both lose power steering belts, making cards very hard to drive-full course yellow for incident on driver's left at the paddock wall.

46. AT THE TWO-HOUR mark, leaders by class are:

GS- #70Mazda RX-7 Turbo, #88Toyota Supra Turbo, #54BMW M3 S- #86Honda Prelude VTEC, #9BMW 328is, #59BMW 328is T-#03Nissan 200SX, #38Hoinda Prelude,#31Honda Prelude Si C-#23Mazda Miata, #40Honda Civic del Sol, #97Mazda Miata

47. #2GS Pontiac Firebird with Goad takes over the lead from #88GS-#88GS Toyota Supra Turbo makes 90-degree left turn across grass into the pits, two crew members over the wall before car comes to a stop, resulting in a 10-second penalty, crew reports that tire was going down on the lap with three minutes left in race-

48. CHECKERED FLAG ends the race. The overall winners and Grand Sports-class winners are Devon Powell and Doug Goad in the #2 Pontiac Firebird. The pair finish 11.425 seconds ahead of the #54 BMW - Sports-class winners are Mike Doolin and Scott Peeler in the #59 BMW 328is - The Touring class winner is the #03 Nissan 240SX with drivers John Norris, Craig Stanton. - The compact winners are Lance Stewart and John Bourassa in the #23 Mazda Miata. Race took 3:00:19.58 over 118 laps-differential between first and second was 11.425 seconds.

48. Race took 3:00:19.58 over 118 laps-differential between first and second overall is 11.425 seconds.

49. The last sessions of the night are two 15-minute practice sessions, one each for Exxon World SportsCars and Exxon Supreme GT Series cars. With the cancellation of Thursday evening's practice, these sessions are the only opportunity to for the teams and drivers to run in the dark prior to Saturday night's races.

50. This concludes today's SportsCar Press Notes. Good night!

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Series PSR
Drivers Andy Wallace , Shane Lewis , Mark Webber , Allan McNish , Butch Leitzinger , Eliseo Salazar , Wayne Taylor , David Murry , Bill Auberlen , Anthony Lazzaro , Randy Pobst , Jon Field , Elliott Forbes-Robinson , Kelly Collins , Devon Powell , Doug Goad , Terry Borcheller , John Bourassa , Lance Stewart , Butch Brickell , Andrea Montermini , Taz Harvey , Jim Downing , Jim Matthews , Chuck Goldsborough , Price Cobb , Scott Harrington , Charles Espenlaub , Roger Foo , Howard Katz , John Morton , Mike Davies , Scooter Gabel , Craig Stanton , Alan Himes , Terry Earwood , Jason Potter , Manny Matz , Marty Miller , Jim Jordan , Joey Jordan , Corona del Mar , John Paul , Doc Bundy , Geoff Auberlen , Tom Papadopoulos , Ross Thompson , Max Schmidt , Ed Zabinski , Barry Waddell , Javier Quiros , Chris Miller , Mark Jones