PWC

Autobahn: Series GT practice two report

Pobst Stays on Top in World Challenge GT Autobahn Practice Session Two JOLIET, Ill. (July 24, 2009) -- Randy Pobst, of Gainesville, Ga., ended Friday afternoon's SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT practice session the same place he ended...

Pobst Stays on Top in World Challenge GT Autobahn Practice Session Two

JOLIET, Ill. (July 24, 2009) -- Randy Pobst, of Gainesville, Ga., ended Friday afternoon's SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT practice session the same place he ended the first one--at the top. Pobst leads the series into qualifying Saturday for Sunday's World Challenge GT Grand Prix Presented by Blackdog Speed Shop, part of the Harrah's Autobahn Grand Prix Presented by Mazda weekend at Autobahn Country Club.

Driving the No. 1 K-PAX Racing Volvo S60, Pobst turned the fastest afternoon time of 2:27.702 (86.769 mph) around the 18-turn, 3.56-mile circuit. The lap was 0.607-second off his morning time, but still ahead of the remainder of the field heading into the 11:45 a.m. (CDT) qualifying session on Saturday.

"Even though my Volvo is a Swedish car, it certainly likes the Autobahn," Pobst said. "This track helps the K-PAX cars because it has short straightaways. Because of its traction advantage, the Volvo has less power than the other cars to make for a good, competitive race. Long straightaways are not a good thing for our Volvo, but tight corners are--the tighter the better--to take advantage of the traction."

Despite topping both sessions, Pobst was aware that the gap to second shrunk considerably from morning to afternoon, from nearly one second to 0.455-second.

"It seems to me that, like at Detroit last year, when the series goes somewhere that we've never been, that I go really fast at first," Pobst said. "I think, from my autocross background, I figure out tracks very quickly. But, they're getting closer every session. So, I hope to maintain this advantage."

Pobst also noted that he felt the track was slower overall in the afternoon because of warmer temperatures in the 80s.

The series' most recent winner, Dino Crescentini, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., was second fastest in the warmer afternoon session in his No. 4 Stoptech/GMG Porsche 911 GT3 with a best time of 2:28.157 (86.502 mph). Crescentini improved from sixth place in the morning session.

Tony Rivera, of Missouri City, Texas, was third fastest in his No. 97 Tax Masters/Mirage Group Porsche 911 GT3 with a fastest time of 2:28.338 (86.397 mph). It was a big jump from his morning time, which placed him eighth.

Andy Pilgrim, of Boca Raton, Fla., was fourth fastest in the afternoon in his No. 8 K-PAX Racing Volvo S60, turning a 2:28.513 (86.295 mph). Eric Curran, of Easthampton, Mass., was fifth quickest in the No. 30 Whelen Engineering Chevrolet Corvette with a 2:28.988 (86.020 mph).

On the combined time sheet, Pobst's morning time maintained his 0.927-second advantage over second-place Pilgrim. Curran's morning time of 2:28.121 (86.523 mph) stood up for third. Crescentini's afternoon time placed him fourth overall, with teammate James Sofronas, of Newport Beach, Calif., fifth overall in his Global Motorsports Group Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, turning a 2:28.260 (86.442 mph) this morning.

Follow live timing and session notes for qualifying at www.world-challenge.com. Sunday's World Challenge GT Grand Prix Presented by Blackdog Speed Shop is scheduled to make its standing start at 3:10 p.m. (CDT). The race will be broadcast on SPEED Tuesday, August 18 at 2 p.m. (EDT). Follow World Challenge on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SPEEDWC.

-credit: scca pro racing

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About this article
Series PWC
Drivers Andy Pilgrim , Randy Pobst , Tony Rivera , James Sofronas , Dino Crescentini
Teams Blackdog Speed Shop , Global Motorsports Group