Portland: Rocketsports race notes

Gentilozzi Takes the Win at Portland in Round Two of the Motorock Trans-Am Series 2004 PORTLAND, Ore. (June 19, 2004) -- Three-time Motorock Trans-Am Champion, Paul Gentilozzi drove the No. 3 Jaguar XKR from the last row of the starting grid to...

Gentilozzi Takes the Win at Portland in Round Two of the Motorock Trans-Am Series 2004

PORTLAND, Ore. (June 19, 2004) -- Three-time Motorock Trans-Am Champion, Paul Gentilozzi drove the No. 3 Jaguar XKR from the last row of the starting grid to capture his 25th series win and his second at Portland International Raceway. Gentilozzi's performance in the Albertsons Trans-Am 100 was a repeat of his 1992 win at PIR, when he started last and raced his way to victory.

Rocketsports driver, Tomy Drissi in the No. 5 AVP (Alien vs. Predator) the Movie Jaguar XKR started from the pole and drove a smooth race to notch a second-place finish, securing his eighth podium. Teammate, Tommy Kendall in the No. 11 Jaguar R-Performance XKR, finished fifth. Fellow Jaguar competitor, Jorge Diaz finished third driving a Rocketsports-built Jaguar XKR, giving Jaguar a podium sweep.

Gentilozzi, in the No. 3 Jaguar XKR, started 14th and moved to the front of the grid by lap ten. He battled teammate Kendall for the early part of the race until lap 37 when Kendall bumped his way by Gentilozzi coming on to the back stretch. Gentilozzi went wide and Kendall took the lead. The nudge between the teammates was the first time Gentilozzi and Kendall have made contact in their many years of competition. "Kendall got by me and we just started picking our way through the field. We got by Drissi and Pickett and set sail. Early in the race I knew Kendall wanted me to drive as hard as I could and I did," said Gentilozzi. "We had a lot of fun driving and that is why I am here."

Drissi, earned his fifth podium finish in the No. 5 AVP (Alien vs. Predator) the Movie Jaguar XKR. Drissi gave the Rocketsports team much credit for his successful weekend and for giving him a very competitive car. "It's fantastic to finish second and I started from the pole for the first time in Trans-Am. We have three more races coming up and if we can finish on the podium in all three, maybe we can be ahead in the championship," said Drissi. "I was worried about using up my tires so I was conservative, but the BFGoodrich tires performed perfectly and carried me to the second-place finish."

Kendall powered through the field giving the new Jaguar AJ-V8 engine its best finish to date. Kendall set the fastest lap of the race and a PIR Trans-Am record in the stock-block AJ-V8 Jaguar engine, posting a time of 1:14.395, breaking the old record by nearly one second. A water-pipe failure forced Kendall to retire from the lead with one lap to go. The fifth-place finish was Kendall's 54th top-five in the Trans-Am series. "The AJ-V8 freight-train was on the way to a Champagne finish, but we had to settle for Gatorade because of cooling issues," stated Kendall. "The power and performance of the AJ-V8 Jaguar engine was outstanding and showed that we can lead these competitive Trans-Am fields."

Gentilozzi retains his firm hold on first place in the series standing with 65 points. Drissi lands in fourth with 39 point, followed by Kendall with 38 points ranking fifth.

The Albertson Trans-Am 100 can be seen on SPIKE TV Sunday June 27, 2004 at 1:30 pm Eastern time during DANGEROUS CURVES hosted by Bronte Tagliani.

-rsr-

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Series Trans-Am
Drivers Tomy Drissi , Paul Gentilozzi , Jorge Diaz