Pobst and his K-PAX/3R Porsche 911 GT3 win SCCA SPEED GP Pole in Detroit Galati qualifies 8th after early session spin and traffic problems Detroit Michigan (August 31, 2008): Randy Pobst qualified his ...
Pobst and his K-PAX/3R Porsche 911 GT3 win SCCA SPEED GP Pole in Detroit
Galati qualifies 8th after early session spin and traffic problems
Detroit Michigan (August 31, 2008): Randy Pobst qualified his #1 K-PAX/3R Racing GT3 on the pole position for Round 8 of the SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT Championships on the Belle Isle street track in Detroit Michigan. Michael Galati qualified the #23 K-PAX/3R Racing Porsche in the 8th position after an early session spin moving up several positions as the session progressed.
"It's my car chief Paul Delio's birthday today and I think fate wasn't to be denied," Pobst said of his pole position.
Randy Pobst, of Gainesville Georgia, recorded a fast lap of 1:30.939 in the middle of the session to win his 24th career World Challenge pole position.
"I think the K-PAX Porsche is obviously suited to this racetrack," said Pobst. "We have a great setup from Will Moody, the mad scientist, for street courses. What changed during that session was the track. We were out real early in the morning and we were basically cleaning the track. It was a real humid morning. There was actually a low fog hanging in the paddock that looked very ominous, like a horror film. Something where you'd expect to see a zombie coming out of the woods.
"I could feel the track conditions in my first run so I just stayed out there running laps. I've noticed that the Toyos take a little longer to come in here than other tracks. It's a very short track, but there is also very low grip."
Pobst set the early pace recording a 1:31.642 on his 3rd pass of the 2.096 mile street track to snatch the pole from Michael McCann who recorded the early fast lap in his Cadillac. Pobst then parked his K-PAX Porsche to see what anyone else had and as it turned out they had plenty as the once dirty track continually improved as the session progressed. Eric Curran blasted off a new pole time of 1:31.550 in his Corvette.
Not to be denied and after some quick adjustments by the 3R Racing crew Pobst took his K-PAX Porsche back out and smoked off the pole winning time of 1:30.939 (81.945 MPH) on his 7th lap some 18 minutes into the half hour session.
"I came in and parked, I was on pole and everything was beautiful," said Pobst. "I'm kind of in that mode where hopefully everyone used up their tires and nobody will go any faster. And then Will Moody told me that Eric Curran was on pole. Then I started hoping that the track was changing. It's unusual in World Challenge to see cars go faster later in the session.
"So I went back out and I know that Bob Raub was sweating bullets because he hates it when the car goes back out on the track in qualifying. He says that's always the perfect time for the driver to try too hard and wreck it, which I almost did about three times. But fortunately, its Paul's birthday and the fates kept stopping the car when it was heading for the wall.
"Somehow in there, we got the pole. I didn't even know it. The times come up on my dash really late on the pit straight and I'm already in the braking zone and Will Moody is so quiet on the radio, he won't tell me. He doesn't like talking. But I knew I was going faster because my shift lights were coming on sooner in some parts."
Michael Galati, of Olmstead Ohio, qualified his #23 K-PAX/3R Racing Porsche 911 GT3 8th after an early session spin hurt his chances. Galati was well back in the field with a best lap of only 1:35.424 but he moved into the top ten with a 32.664 on lap 5 and then up to 6th with a 1:32.066 on lap 8. Both Pilgrim and Davis would leap frog past Galati later in the session.
"It was a tough session for me," said Galati. "On the first lap Andy (Pilgrim) almost spun in front of me so I had to back out of it and then on the next lap I spun. Then it seemed like I could never get a lap without traffic so I came into the pits and let the tires cool down."
After cooling his tires Galati returned to the track but once again he found it difficult finding an opening on the tight Detroit track where traffic is always an issue.
"It seemed like I would catch someone coming out of the pits every time I came by so I never really got in a clean lap," said Galati. "I did get up to 6th but other guys went by me because the track was just starting to come in.
"But at that point I was out of fuel so I couldn't stay out and try to improve my time like they were!"
Pobst, Pilgrim and McCann all went out very late in the session but none improved their times during the closing laps.
"I'm feeling real confident about my launches," Pobst said of the pending race. "K-PAX/3R has kind of got that figured out for me. I'm in a nice rhythm. When I see the 5-second sign, I say to myself 'lights go out, go. Lights go on, stay'. That's from 2005 when I threw away a Touring Car Championship by blowing starts twice. That isn't happening again. I'm really confident about starts. I'm sure we'll be in turn one first."
"I think we will have a good car for the race and hopefully I will find a way past at least some of the cars in front of me," said Michael Galati of the race later today.
Randy Pobst and Michael Galati and the K-PAX/3R Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars will compete in Round 8 of the SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT Championship in Detroit at 12:45 PM Eastern Time today (Sunday August 31st 2008).
The race can be seen on SPEED TV on Wednesday September 12th at 12:00 pm Eastern Time.
For addition information about the K-PAX/3R Racing Porsches got to our web site at www.kpaxracing.com and for more info about the World Challenge Series and live timing results for Round 6 at Road America go to the World Challenge web site at www.World-Challenge.com.