Sonoma press notes 1-21

1. Good morning and welcome to the first day of official activity for the Toshiba Copiers & Fax California Grand Prix at Sears Point Raceway. The weekend features four Professional SportsCar Racing, Inc. (SportsCar) championships competing: A...

1. Good morning and welcome to the first day of official activity for the Toshiba Copiers & Fax California Grand Prix at Sears Point Raceway. The weekend features four Professional SportsCar Racing, Inc. (SportsCar) championships competing: A 2-hour Exxon World SportsCar Championship, a 1-hour 45-minute Exxon Supreme GT Series Presented by Virgin Interactive race, a 3-hour SPEEDVISION Cup for Stock SportsCars featuring Grand Sports, Sports, Touring and Compact cars and a 40-minute Black Magic Pro Series race for World Sports Racers.

2. Today's activities include practice for the Exxon World SportsCar Championship, Exxon Supreme GT Series Presented by Virgin Interactive, Speedvision Cup for Stock SportsCars and the Black Magic Pro Series. First round of qualifying begins today for the Toshiba Copiers & Fax California Grand Prix. Positions one and two for Exxon World SportsCar Championship will be locked in today in qualifying at 3:40 pm. There will be qualifying for Saturday's SPEEDVISION Cup for Stock SportsCars.

3. The following people are here to help you: Sears Point Raceway . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Rob Lopez, Director of Public Relations Professional SportsCar Racing, Inc. (SportsCar) . . . . . . . . . . . . Ed Nicholls, Director of Communications


EXXON WORLD SPORTSCAR CHAMPIONSHIP CAR CHANGE 2 ADD Bill Dollihite/Austin, TX 16 ADD Andy Wallace/Aylesbury, England 28 ADD Thane Sellers/San Francisco, CA

EXXON SUPREME GT SERIES PRESENTED BY VIRGIN INTERACTIVE CAR CLASS CHANGE 3 GTS-1 NEW ENTRY Chevrolet Monte Carlo Rudy Revak/Los Gatos, CA and Mark Kirberg/Corte Madera, CA 11 GTS-1 NEW ENTRY Pontiac Grand Prix Nelson Richardson/Novato, CA and Izzy Sanchez/Mtn. View, CA 12 GTS-3 NEW ENTRY Porsche 911 Jim Gurney/Santa Ana, CA and John Morton/El Segundo,CA 53 GTS-2 ADD Michael Schrom/Ghent, NY 55 GTS-3 SCRATCH Entry 56 GTS-2 ADD Dennis Aase/Orange, CA and DELETE Phillip Collin 77 GTS-3 ADD David Lapham/Bronxul, NY

SPEEDVISION Cup for Stock Sports Cars CAR CLASS CHANGE 2 GS SCRATCH entry 99 GS SCRATCH entry 45 GS NEW Eduardo Dibos/Lima,Peru and DELETE Bruno Chappi 8 C ADD Taz Harvey/Danville, CA, Roger Foo/Hayward, CA and Greg Theiss, Omaha, NE 22 T SCRATCH entry 85 T NEW Pete Mercier/Sausalito, CA and Mike Petersen/Las Vegas, NV 00 T SCRATCH Ivor Wigham 03 T ADD M. Webber/Hidden Hill, CA, M. Jones/Long Beach, CA, J. Norris/Culver City, CA, C. Stanton/Seal Beach, CA 04 T ADD Will Hunholz/Seattle, WA and Kenzo Sudo/Freemont, CA, DELETE M. Webber, M. Jones, J. Norris, C. Stanton



SPEEDVISION CUP CAR CLASS CHANGE 11 S NEW Ty Moore/Kirkland, WA and Steve Pfieffer/LeBanon, NH

7. GREEN FLAG drops to start 40-minute practice sesson for Exxon World SportsCar competitors at 10:10 a.m. Early times about 1 1/2-2 seconds off qualifying record speeds. #16 Riley & Scott Ford of James Weaver turning in fastest laps before heading into the pits...Andrea Montermini, in the #30 MOMO Ferrari...James Weaver 1:25.900, 3/10ths off record...fastest of the Ferraris is #3 with Fermin Velez at the wheel in 1:27.133, Butch Leitzinger, who holds the track qualifying record, is fourth fastest, followed by #30 MOMO Ferrari...Craig T. Nelson, star of the hit TV Series Coach turned in a fastest lap of 1:28.133 in Screaming Eagle Yokahama-sponsored Ford R&S MK III...Nelson out of the car and replaced by Bill Dollihite...#16 into the pits, bodywork off to cool car...Weaver takes fastest lap down to 1:25.78 late in session...Wayne Taylor third fastest with six minutes left in session... CHECKERED FLAG drops to end session at 10:55 a.m.

8. Jason Priestley and Andy Pilgrim, in #98 Ford Mustang Cobra, had fastest time, 1:50.074, an average speed of 82.417 m.p.h. to lead SPEEDVISION CUP GS cars...Kelly Collins/Dave Schardt, in #92 Toyota Supra Turbo, were second Sports division car was #9 car of Jeff McMillin/Derek Hill...first Touring car was #07 of John Norris/Craig Stanton/Mark Webber/Marc Jones.

9. GREEN FLAG drops to start 40-minute practice session for Exxon Supreme GTS practice cars at 11 Chevrolet Camaro of Roger Schramm/Stu Hayner off the track at the end of Turn #1 (end of drag strip), facing the wrong flag for incident at Turn #8 involving car #53, the Porsche 911Turbo of Michael Schrom/Melanie Snow, with 11 minutes left in hit tire wall...Schrom driving, he's out, on its roof, minor fire, exstinguished quickly, damage not too extensive...GREEN FLAG drops to restart session at 11:39 a.m....01 Porsche 911 Turbo of Andy Pilgrim/Yochen Rohr among fastest cars...Pilgrim holds record of 96 consecutive finishes. Streak started at Laguna Seca in July, 1992 and has gone on through six different series and 22 different co-drivers...Andy Wallace out of #66 Ford Panoz GTR-1 car, Doc Bundy in....Scott Maxwell behind the wheel of #27 Ford Mustang Cobra, sponsored by Multimatic Engineering of Unionville, Ont....CHECKERED FLAG ends session at 11:50 a.m....Bundy/Wallace Ford Panoz GTR-1 was fastest car in session with a time of 1:33.543, an average of 96.982 m.p.h....Schramm/Hayner Chevrolet Camaro was second in 1:34.597 (95.901 m.p.h.)...BMW3 of Hill/Quiros was third, four seconds slower...26 of 27 cars entered were on track.

10. GREEN FLAG drops at 12:25 p.m. to start 40-minute practice session for SPEEDVISION Cup for Stock Sportscars...#17 Ford Mustang Cobra of Jeff Lapcevich of Canada, made major setup changes after first practice session, changed to softer springs and suspension hoping to get more speed...Eduardo Dibos added to the #45 BMW flag with 11 minutes #04 Nissan 240SX SE of Mark Webber/Marc Jones/John Norris/Craig Stanton off in Turn #2, drvier still in car, towed back to pits...5 minutes left in session when GREEN FLAG drops to restart practice...CHECKERED FLAG drops to end practice session at 1:12 p.m.

11. GREEN FLAG drops to start practice session for the Exxon World SportsCars on schedule at 2 p.m. when the GREEN FLAG dropped...#1 Oldsmobile R&S MK III pulls off between Turn #2 and #6 with Wayne Taylor at the reports he lost the engine...#60 car pulls off at the end of track behind wall at Turn #11, pushed back to pits by flag stops session when #40 cars stops on track....9 minutes left in session...Craig T. Nelson gets into #2 Ford R&S MK III with less than 2 minutes left in session, replacing Bill Dollihite...#16 Ford R&S MK III car with James Weaver at wheel, hits the wall on pit straightaway, damage to left front, pulls off at the end of the pits just as CHECKERED FLAG drops to end the session.

12. CORRECTION TO event Fact Sheet: In the Exxon Supreme GTS-3 division, Porsche was victorious at Atlanta, while BMW teams won at Daytona, Sebring, Lime Rock and Watkins Glen.

13. GREEN FLAG drops to start half-hour practice session for Black Magic Pro Series cars...Series leader Mike Davies car fastest in morning session and continues post best lap three cars in practice are Davies, David Tenney in #10 and #5 car of Gary Tiller.


CAR CLASS CHANGE 71 GTS-2 NEW ENTRY Mazda RX-7, Brian Richards/Pleasant Hill, CA and David Schardt/Dayton, OH

SPEEDVISION CUP CAR CLASS CHANGE 0 GS ADD Charles Morgan/Conway,AR and Larry Schumacher/Cincinnati, OH

15. GREEN FLAG drops at 3:45 p.m. to start 20-minute qualifying session for top two positions only...#1 car won't be out because of blown engine in earlier practice...#4 Oldsmobile R&S MK III of Jim Pace/Neto Jochamowitz off at entrance to Turn #7, in racing line, brakes locked up, got car going, returns to pits...#16 Ford R&S MK III of Rob Dyson car not repaired in time to start session after hitting pit straight wall in practice...#3 MOMO Ferrari 333SP with Fermin Velez driving is fastest in early going with a time of 1:26.144, second is #27 MOMO Ferrari 333SP with a time of 1:27.256, followed by #43 Ferrari 333SP with Eliseo Salazaar at wheel...#16 gets on track with about 5 minutes left in session...with about 3 minutes left in session, Andrea Montermini puts MOMO Ferrari 333SP into first place, followed by #3 of Velez, #27 Ferrari (Theys), #20 Ford R&S MK III with Butch Leitzinger at wheel drops from first to fourth, followed by #8 Chevrolet Hawk C-8 with Johnny O'Connell at wheel...#16, with Weaver at wheel, moves into third place on final lap with all-out assault on field...CHECKERED FLAG ends session at 4:05 p.m. All Ferrari front row. Montermini's time of 1:24.341 is more than a second under the existing track record...Velez's time of 1:25.115 is also under the record.

16. DRIVER QUOTES: MONTERMINI: "Track is impressive, but I still have a lot to learn. I saw it for the first time yesterday (Thursday) and I was worried when the qualifying session was black-flagged because I was on a fast lap...I just put the pedal down and went for it at the end. VELEZ: "We decided to go back to the old bodywork for the race so we didn't get a chance to test it and that cost us time. But we're glad we did (change the bodywork) because it has made the car much better. We struggled at Watkins Glen. The LeMans bodywork doesn't have a lot of downforce, while the original bodywork has more downforce and consequently more drag. I think we have a slight advantage in tires for the race. While we don't have a soft tire for qualifying, they are very strong and consistent for the race. Six or seven cars can win the race. It will be very demanding physically and I think tires will play a big part in the outcome. The track is very safe but there is only one line. If you go off-line, it's very dirty and you can get into trouble very easily."

17. GREEN FLAG drops to start 30-minute practice session for Exxon Supreme Presented by Virgin Interactive GTS cars...#66 GTS-1 Ford Panoz of Bundy/Wallace is quickest with a time of 1:32.779 (97.781 m.p.h.)...second is Ford Mustang Cobra of Maxwell/Priestley is second, five seconds off the pace, followed by Chevrolet Camaro of Schramm/Hayner...#71 Mazda RX-7 Turbo pulls off into drag racing strip area, stops with flat tire...CHECKERED FLAG ends practice session at 4:40 p.m.

18. Mike Davies (#83) on practice sessions for Black Magic Pro Series: "The morning practice was much better, considering all the problems I had during testing on Thursday -- missing half of one session with a flat tire and hitting the wall. With a good night's sleep and a beautiful day today (Friday), I was able to establish a rhythm and my times improved.

"We had new tires for the afternoon session and this helped some. However, I'm not as comfortable as I would like to be. The track is dirty, with a lot of marbles out there and it's difficult sometimes. We have a few more changes to make and expect further improvements tomorrow."

19. GREEN FLAG to start qualifying session for SPEEDVISION CUP qualifying session held by oil spill in Turn #1...session starts at 4:58 p.m....fastest car early in session is S class BMW 328is of Ric Van Cleef/Chuck Goldsborough with time of 1:55.454/78.577 m.p.h....#03 Nissan 240SX leads Touring class (sixth overall) with a time of 1:56.842...#97 Mazda Miata first Compact class car (17th overall) with lap of 1:59.361/76.249 m.p.h....#85 Honda Prelude Si of Mercier/Petersen hits tire wall behind drag strip tower, car sideways across track just before checkered flag, extensive damage to right front of car...#59 BMW328is of Mike Doolin/Scott Peeler is fastest in Sports class, #03 Nissan 240SX of Webber/Hill//Jones/J. Norris is fastest in Touring class...#97 Mazda Miata of Joe Jordan/Charles Espenlaub is fastest in Compact class...second pole for Peeler, Stanton's first pole and first for Mike Courtney and first in series for Miata. Scott Peeler, #59 BMW 328is, Sports Class Pole Winner -- "The Franz Blam team put us on the pole, plus BMW has stepped up and really helped. This is my third or fourth time at this track; we've always had good luck here. My goal for tomorrow's race is to stay out of trouble -- get through the first turn or two with no yellow flags!" Craig Stanton, #03 Nissan 240 SX, Touring Class Pole Sitter -- "This is great! It's my first pole! John (Norris, co-driver) has been a great teacher. He has a world of information so I just follow his lead." Mike Courtney, # Mazda Miata, Compact Class Pole Winner -- "This is the first pole ever for a Mazda Miata in SportsCar. This is my home track, but it is a lot of little things that put us on the pole. We've just worked harder and the car's have gotten better."

20. GREEN FLAG drops to start 15-minute qualifying session for SPEEDVISION CUP Grand Sports class cars at 5:15 p.m....#32 Pontiac Firebird Formula of Stu Hayner/John Heinricy/Marty Miller early leader with lap time of 1:50.115/82.387 m.p.h., followed by #98 Ford Mustang Cobra of Andy Pilgrim (driving)/Jason Priestley, followed by #27 Mustang of Scott Maxwell/Greg Wilkins...#54 BMW M3 of Scooter Gabel/Terry Borcheller (driving) is fastest with lap time of 1:49.907/82.709 m.p.h. with 5 minutes left in session, followed by #88 Toyota Supra Turbo of Eric Van Cleef/Chuck Goldsborough...#70 Mazda RX-7 Turbo of Zave Aberman/Claude Gou pulls off into drag racing area, drive remains in car, no damage...first pole position for Borcheller, setting track record with lap of 1:49.985/82.709 m.p.h., breaking previous mark of 1:50.298/82.249 m.p.h.

21. Terry Borcheller wins the pole in the Grand Sports class, driving the #54 Massari-Muller Cast-Crete BMW M3 Lightweight. This is the same car which Kelly Collins put on the pole here last year, althougth that was two generations ago in its ownership. This is also the first pole in the SPEEDVISION Cup series for Borcheller, a Bondurant School of High Performance Driving instructor. "If any track was ever designed for the abilities of the BMW M3, Sears Point is it!! Sears Point is very much a driver's track and the BMW M3 is a car which begs to be driven. Horsepower is always an advantage, but handling abilities are very important too, and I think our pole position in a car we just obtained shows the BMW is a handling machine. I did drive an M3 for another team last year, so I'm not unfamiliar with them, but Scooter Gabel, my co-driver, and I, have been running a Ford Mustang all this season."

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Series PSR
Drivers Andy Wallace , Mark Webber , Derek Hill , Butch Leitzinger , James Weaver , Johnny O'Connell , Andy Pilgrim , Rob Dyson , John Heinricy , Kelly Collins , Scott Maxwell , Terry Borcheller , Michael Schrom , Andrea Montermini , Jeff McMillin , Mark Kirberg , Taz Harvey , Chuck Goldsborough , Charles Morgan , Charles Espenlaub , Roger Foo , Jason Priestley , John Morton , Mike Davies , Scooter Gabel , Jim Pace , Craig Stanton , Greg Wilkins , Fermin Velez , Jeff Lapcevich , Stu Hayner , Marty Miller , Joey Jordan , Doc Bundy , Dennis Aase , Melanie Snow