RUHLMAN FAST ALL WEEKEND, QUALIFIES THIRD FOR TODAY'S EDMONTON GRAND PRIX TRANS-AM RACE EDMONTON, Alberta (July 16, 2005)-- Randy Ruhlman, the points leader in the 2005 Trans-Am Drivers Championship battle, will line up third for the start of ...
RUHLMAN FAST ALL WEEKEND, QUALIFIES THIRD FOR TODAY'S EDMONTON GRAND PRIX TRANS-AM RACE
EDMONTON, Alberta (July 16, 2005)-- Randy Ruhlman, the points leader in the 2005 Trans-Am Drivers Championship battle, will line up third for the start of today's Festival City 100 Trans-Am race at the Edmonton Grand Prix. Clearing skies are predicted for the afternoon, as this morning's warm-up session saw steady drizzle and rain tires with full wet setups. Ruhlman will start his 151st Trans-Am race here at Edmonton, where the scheduled 51-lap race gets under way today at 4:45 MDT.
Ruhlman was fast all day yesterday, before securing a third place starting spot. Ruhlman posted the fastest time in the second practice session and was second during the initial practice on the new airport course.
During qualifying, Ruhlman held the pole by a good margin, coming in to preserve tire wear for the race. With just minutes left in the session, Drissi and then Gentilozzi clicked off a single fast lap each. Ruhlman scored a time of 1:17.263 in the #49 Preformed Line Products Corvette, eclipsed for the pole by less than 0.12 by the Jaguar of Paul Gentilozzi and just 0.01 behind the Rocketsports team Jaguar of Tomy Drissi.
Ruhlman says of the course, "This is a fast and technical course. We thought it might be wide open here like Cleveland. This track is fast, but it is a lot different. There are a lot of passing areas, and there are some tighter sections. But also here there are some areas where you are going flat out and then need to stop with some hard braking. I like it; it is a fun track to drive. And we have a great car, it should be a really good race."
Ruhlman retains an eighteen-point lead in the 2005 Drivers Championship battle. He scored his second win of the season at the Cleveland Grand Prix in a dramatic come from the back finish. Ruhlman has scored two wins (Long Beach and Cleveland) , so far in the first four Rounds of 2005 Trans-Am competition, and a second at Portland, where he set a fast race lap record.
The Festival City 100, Round 5 of the 2005 Trans-Am Championship and part of the part of the West Edmonton Mall Grand Prix of Edmonton weekend, is scheduled for Saturday, July 16, 2005. Saturday's race will air on tape-delayed basis, Sunday, July 24 at 1 p.m. EDT on SPEED Channel.
Ruhlman drives the #49 blue and white PLP Corvette, sponsored in Canada by Toronto area, Preformed Line Products Canada. This year, Ruhlman is joined on the Derhaag Motorsports team by Calgary native and rookie contender Hima Maher.
Randy Ruhlman won the prestigious Trans-Am season opener at Long Beach Grand Prix in April and followed that up with a second place finish at Portland International Raceway. The win at the Cleveland Grand Prix was his third consecutive podium and tenth consecutive top five finish.
Randy Ruhlman finished third overall in the 2004 Trans-Am Driver's Championship, in the closest points battle ever in Trans-Am history. Last year, Ruhlman scored seven straight top five finishes, including three podiums: a second at Road America, another second at Toronto, and a third at Infineon. Last year, he was the pole sitter for the Road America race and sat on the front row for the Cleveland Grand Prix. Randy Ruhlman is fourth in Top Ten finishes in Trans-Am history.
Randy Ruhlman recently spent time between races working with the Buckle Up America program to promote seat belt use. Ruhlman was the keynote speaker at the Cleveland House of Blues Kick-off of the Northeast Ohio "Click It or Ticket" campaign. The program was spearheaded by UHHS Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital's Outreach Program. Ruhlman also continues to work closely with the Lance Armstrong Foundation Peleton Project, especially in helping to promote the Tour de Road America, coming up on August 20th, to raise money for cancer survivorship.