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Road America: Touring Car practice one report

Lindsey Fastest in Opening World Challenge TC Practice at Road America ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (Aug. 14, 2009) -- Patrick Lindsey, of Santa Barbara, Calif., paced the opening SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT practice session in preparation...

Lindsey Fastest in Opening World Challenge TC Practice at Road America

ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (Aug. 14, 2009) -- Patrick Lindsey, of Santa Barbara, Calif., paced the opening SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT practice session in preparation for Saturday's Road America Grand Prix Presented by StopTech. Pierre Kleinubing, of Coconut Creek, Fla., and Eric Foss, of Fort Worth, Texas, completed the top three.

Driving the No. 57 Horton Autosport/Sloan Securities MAZDA6, Lindsey turned a fast lap time of 2:29.855 (97.246 mph) around the 14-turn, four-mile Road America circuit--the only car to turn a time under 2:30 in the session.

This weekend marks only the second appearance of the year for Lindsey.

"We're happy to be back," Lindsey said. "It's great to run with these guys. I almost forgot how much fun it can be. We're super happy to put it in the 'practice-winning position' for [Team owner] John [Horton] and Rob. The Mazdas are going to be super quick here this weekend.

"We weren't sure if we were going to race this year. We all have work schedules and personal things going on. John married my sister back in May. We just weren't sure if we'd have the time and the economy didn't help. Then, we just made the decision about a month ago that we'd do the last four. So we got to work and figured out where we needed to be to be competitive. I think we've hit our goal so far.

"I love the track. It's gorgeous. Everything about Wisconsin is a lot of fun and pretty. The track didn't feel that great this morning, so we're still searching a little bit. We're hoping to whittle things down a little bit before qualifying. I think everyone is in the same boat, but we definitely have a little ways to go yet."

The 2008 polesitter, Kleinubing ran a 2:30.087 (97.096 mph) in the No. 42 Acura/RealTime/Red Line Oil Acura TSX for second place.

Foss, a shoe-in for 2009 Rookie of the Year, was third fastest in the No. 75 MAZDASPEED/StopTech/ProParts MAZDA6, turning a fastest time of 2:30.122 (97.073 mph).

Foss was followed by two teammates, Charles Espenlaub, of Lutz, Fla., and point leader Jason Saini, of Fort Worth, Texas. Polesitter at Mid-Ohio last weekend, Espenlaub entered a fastest time of 2:30.312 (96.950 mph) in his No. 73 MAZDASPEED/StopTech/ProParts MAZDA6. Saini ran a 2:30.501 (96.829 mph) in the No. 74 MAZDASPEED/StopTech/ProParts MAZDA6.

Peter Cunningham (Acura TSX), defending race winner James Clay (BMW 328i), Seth Thomas (BMW 328i), Nick Esayian (BMW 328i) and Kuno Wittmer (Acura TSX) completed the top 10.

Today's opening 20-minute practice session was combined with the SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup series. This afternoon's second, and final, session will be combined with World Challenge GT and run for 45 minutes beginning at 5:15 p.m. Follow live timing and notes at www.world-challenge.com. Saturday's Round Eight race makes its standing start at 5:45 p.m. (CDT).

Follow World Challenge on Twitter @SPEEDWC.

-credit: scca pro racing

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Series PWC
Drivers Pierre Kleinubing , Peter Cunningham , Charles Espenlaub , James Clay , Nick Esayian , Kuno Wittmer , Seth Thomas , Jason Saini , Patrick Lindsey , Eric Foss
Teams HART