Gentilozzi Cleveland preview

Cleveland, Ohio - Two-time Trans-Am champion Paul Gentilozzi looks to extend his winning streak to three-in-row when the Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup returns the Burke Lakefront Airport for the Trans-Am 100 presented by Simple...

Cleveland, Ohio - Two-time Trans-Am champion Paul Gentilozzi looks to extend his winning streak to three-in-row when the Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup returns the Burke Lakefront Airport for the Trans-Am 100 presented by Simple Green during the Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland weekend on June 29-30. Gentilozzi, driver of the No.3 Johnson Controls/HomeLink Jaguar XKR, scored back-to-back wins at Mosport and Detroit.

Gentilozzi, who is just two points out of the lead in the championship points standings behind teammate Johnny Miller, started on the pole and scored a flag-to-flag victory last year to claim his first Cleveland win.

"This is such a simple, most basic of tracks, yet it's totally misunderstood," said Gentilozzi who ranks first in all-time Trans-Am top-five (81) and top-ten (108) finishes, "Fast Five" qualifying starts (96), race starts (166), and prize money winnings. "They turn us loose on all the acres of concrete; you've really got to be technical to find the quick way around this circuit. You can't train muts to be show dogs!

"This track is like the Drew Carey of racing...it doesn't get much respect," quipped Gentilozzi who has 21 Trans-Am victories.

"Because it's so flat and featureless, you've got to develop a rhythm or you'll become disoriented," explained Gentilozzi, who finished second in the points standings in 2000. "This is a tough track to run as a rookie. It takes years of experience to learn all the nuances and bumps that are so unique to this circuit.

"I see lots of definition," continued Gentilozzi. "I know every little crack, the runway lights, where the slippery paint is. Passing can be tough; the only two places are at the end of the braking zones on each straightaway. Everywhere else, it's a transition on and off the throttle.

"This track is extremely interesting from the driving perspective because it's so different from what we're used to," concluded Gentilozzi. "Plus, it's the only road course where the fans can see the entire circuit. It makes for a great race - from the cockpit and the grandstand."

-RR

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About this article
Series SCCA , Trans-Am
Drivers Paul Gentilozzi , Johnny Miller