Tough Day for Team Cadillac at Road America Pilgrim Finishes Seventh, Fellows Beset by Gremlins ELKHART LAKE, Wis., Aug. 20, 2006 - If adversity builds character, then Team Cadillac has character in abundance following the seventh round of the...
Tough Day for Team Cadillac at Road America
Pilgrim Finishes Seventh, Fellows Beset by Gremlins
ELKHART LAKE, Wis., Aug. 20, 2006 - If adversity builds character, then Team Cadillac has character in abundance following the seventh round of the SCCA SPEED World Challenge GT today at Road America. Reigning SPEED GT champion Andy Pilgrim finished seventh, while Long Beach winner Ron Fellows was slowed by an intermittent problem and finished 20th.
Tommy Archer won in a Dodge Viper with a 1.028-second margin of victory over Lawson Aschenbach's Porsche 911 GT3. After seven of 10 races, Cadillac is now third in the manufacturers championship standings, 10 points behind Porsche and five behind Dodge. Pilgrim is third in the drivers championship, 11 points behind leader Aschenbach.
"We started seventh and finished seventh, and we're doing the best we can with what the rules give us," said Pilgrim. "In the current circumstances, we're going into a gunfight with a water balloon. We can brake with the best cars, but otherwise we have no ammunition - we struggle on the straights and then work as hard as we can in the corners. The team is working fantastically hard, and to finish seventh is frankly amazing in this situation."
Fellows and Pilgrim started sixth and seventh respectively on the grid. Pilgrim held seventh after the first lap, while Fellows was 10th. Both advanced one position when James Sofronas' Porsche pitted on the second lap, then held station during a four-lap caution period.
When racing resumed on the seventh lap, the Cadillac drivers were sixth and ninth. Fellows moved up to eighth on the 11th circuit, while Viper driver Mike McCann passed Pilgrim on lap 13. On the 14th lap, Fellows experienced the first of two intermittent problems that dropped him out of the top 20. He ultimately finished 20th.
"I got a good jump at the start, but might have been too aggressive with the throttle and spun the tires," Fellows reported. "My Cadillac was really good through the Kink and I tried to pass a Viper and a Volvo going into Turn 12. The Volvo driver was busy with someone in front of him, and when he came in front of me I locked up the brakes.
"I was in the middle of a pack of cars, and with the restrictions the Cadillacs have, some of these guys could just blow past me," he explained. "Once I got clear of the pack, I was able to make up some ground in the corners, but unfortunately we had some kind of gremlin."
"Today was a difficult day," said Team Cadillac program manager Dave Spitzer. "I just wish we could compete; the fans can see how hard my drivers are driving, and I know how hard the entire team is working. As reigning champion, Team Cadillac belongs up front, and we intend to get there again."
-credit: gm racing