Two Wins in a Row for Tommy Archer, Dodge Viper Competition Coupe St. Petersburg, Fla. (April 3, 2005) -- 3R Racing's Tommy Archer fought hard in the opening lap of the first street course of the year to get ahead of the pole-sitting Porsche...
Two Wins in a Row for Tommy Archer, Dodge Viper Competition Coupe
St. Petersburg, Fla. (April 3, 2005) -- 3R Racing's Tommy Archer fought hard in the opening lap of the first street course of the year to get ahead of the pole-sitting Porsche of Wolf Henzler, and maintained the lead during the majority of the race to win his second straight SPEED GT World Challenge race.
"There was a point where (Robin) Liddell passed me on the last lap going into turn one," said defending champion Tommy Archer, "but I kept the racing line and was able to get him back by turn two." Archer defended his lead for the rest of the lap, using the tight street course to his advantage.
Four of the top 10 finishers were driving the Dodge Viper Competition Coupe including all three of the 3R Racing Vipers, with drivers Phil McClure and Tim Wiens finishing 6th and 7th. Wiens won the B&M Hole Shot award by moving ahead six positions in the first lap. Rob Foster, of Phoenix, AZ, drove a brilliant race to finish10th. "I was expecting a demolition derby," said Foster, "and it was true -- I got hit four times during the race including a brush with the wall."
The tight street course took its toll on competitors as almost half of the laps were completed under full course yellow. "All of the yellow flags helped keep the tire temps cool for most of the race," noted Archer, "and the Porsche kept the pressure on the whole time. It might have been a different outcome had the race been run under green longer."
With the win at St. Petersburg, Dodge moves into a substantial points lead for the Manufacturer championship. Late race charges from both the Porsche and Cadillac drivers resulted in some quick lap times, but Archer held them off, gathering 33 valuable driver championship points going into the next race at Road Atlanta.
One of the more impressive drives was that of Bob Woodhouse in the Woodhouse Auto Family Viper Competition Coupe. "We came into turn five, three abreast," longtime Viper racer Woodhouse stated, "and I got into the marbles, smacking the driver side of my car pretty hard." During a caution, Woodhouse came into the pits just to make sure the car was OK, returning to the race in last place. "Even though the car was hurt a little, I just put my head down and charged through the field once the race went green again." Woodhouse battled back to a strong 14th place finish, moving up from a 19th place start.
"The Viper Competition Coupe combined with some pretty impressive drivers is making this series a blast to watch," said Dan Knott, Director of DaimlerChrysler's SRT Division. "Tommy Archer is one awesome driver," he continued, "and we're lucky to have him behind the wheel of a Viper."
Both the Viper Competition Coupe and SRT-4 will be competing in the upcoming World Challenge SPEED GT and Touring races at Road Atlanta on April 16th and 17th, 2005.