Road America: Notes of Interest, schedule

Johnson Controls 100. Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wis. Friday-Saturday, August 16-17. Trans-Am Series for The Bfgoodrich Tires Cup schedule (All times CDT): FRIDAY, AUGUST 16 Trans-Am Series practice, 8:15-8:55 a.m. Trans-Am Series qualifying,...

Johnson Controls 100.
Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wis.
Friday-Saturday, August 16-17.

Trans-Am Series for The Bfgoodrich Tires Cup schedule (All times CDT):

FRIDAY, AUGUST 16 Trans-Am Series practice, 8:15-8:55 a.m. Trans-Am Series qualifying, 12:40-1:10 p.m.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 17 Trans-Am Series practice, 8:15-8:45 a.m. Johnson Controls 100, 3:30 p.m.

BROADCAST: SPEED Channel
Sunday, August 18, noon ET (tape delay).

NOTEWORTHY

* Butch Leitzinger's (#88 Tommy Bahama/Tom Gloy Chevrolet Corvette) August 4 victory at Trois-Rivieres moved Chevrolet into first place in the 2002 Trans-Am Series Manufacturers' Championship for the first time this season, while adding some heat to one of the most closely contested Manufacturers' Championship battles in recent history. Through seven of 12 rounds in the 2002 Trans-Am Series, Chevrolet has 87 points, while Panoz and Jaguar are tied close behind, with 83 points each. On the strength of championship leader Boris Said's (#33 Applied Computer Solutions Panoz Esperante) three victories and six consecutive podium finishes to start the season, Panoz had held the Manufacturers' Championship lead since Round 2 at Mosport, but Said's ninth-place finish, and Leitzinger's victory, at Trois-Rivieres allowed Chevrolet to take over the top spot. Manufacturer's Championship points are awarded to a manufacturer's highest-finishing automobile, regardless of model, on a 15-13-11-9-7-5-4-3-2-1 basis.

* This weekend's Johnson Controls 100 will mark Trans-Am Series' 33rd consecutive appearance at Road America, making the 4.048-mile road course the most tenured venue in the series. Trans-Am cars have competed at Road America annually since 1970, when Mark Donohue drove a Javelin to victory over Swede Savage and Sam Posey. Tom Kendall (1990, '96, '97) and the late Peter Gregg (1974, '77 [Category II], '79) own the most career Trans-Am Series victories at Road America, with three each. Donohue (1970, '71), Jerry Hansen (1975, '82), Bob Tullius (1977 [Category I], '78 [Category I]), Monte Shelton (1980, '81), Pete Halsmer (1986, '87), Dorsey Schroeder (1989, '94), Scott Sharp (1991, '93), and Paul Gentilozzi (1999, 2000) have won two each. Gentilozzi (#3 Johnson Controls/Microchip/Matrix One/Futaba Jaguar XKR) is one of four drivers competing in this weekend's Johnson Controls 100 who owns a previous Trans-Am Series victory at Road America. The others are Boris Said (1995), Stu Hayner (#02 Trenton Forging/Tom Bell Chevrolet Corvette, 1998) and Michael Lewis (#12 AmeriSuites Jaguar XKR, 2001). Kendall is the all-time leader in Trans-Am Series pole positions at Road America, with three (1990, '95 and '96), and holds the track qualifying record of 114.016 miles per hour (2 minutes, 7.814 seconds), established in 1995.

* Tom Gloy Racing and drivers Butch Leitzinger and Randy Ruhlman (#49 Preformed Line Products Chevrolet Corvette) will be seeking the team's fourth Trans-Am victory at Road America in the past decade, joining wins by Ron Fellows (1992), Dorsey Schroeder (1994) and Boris Said (1995).

* No pole winner has driven to a Trans-Am race victory at Road America since 1993, when Scott Sharp turned the trick. Tom Kendall was the fastest qualifier when he drove to victory in 1996, but he started fifth as a result of series rules stipulating that the five fastest qualifiers start the race in inverse order of their qualifying positions.

* For the first time this season, BFGoodrich® Tires engineers have mandated the BFGoodrich® g-ForceTM T/A® radials hard #75 compound for all competitors at Road America. The mandating of tire compound is based on the combination of car weight (2,800 pounds) and the sustained 180-plus miles per hour speed the Trans-Am cars reach at Road America. (In comparison, the CART Champ cars, which exceed 200 mph, weigh only 1,550 pounds.) "From a tire perspective, the expected high ambient temperature in August and the length of time at high speed on these heavy cars takes a toll," said BFGoodrich® Tires lead engineer Gary Blalock. "We have taken a conservative approach and mandated the hard compound for the past couple of years and it has worked very well. Our #75 compound tires will allow drivers to race hard for the entire 100-mile event and provide some exciting racing action. The hard compound has proven to be extremely durable without sacrificing speed -- a perfect combination for Road America."

* BFGoodrich® Tires sponsors the BFGoodrich® Tires "Take Control" Award, an award that will be given to the driver who leads the most laps in each Trans-Am race. In the event of a tie, the driver with the highest finishing position will receive the award. For his effort, the driver will receive a free set of BFGoodrichâ g-Force T/Aâ radials. BFGoodrich® has also established a contingency award for the top 10 finishers in each Trans-Am Series race this season. The top five finishers will receive two tires and finishers from sixth through tenth place will receive one tire.

NEXT EVENT: Sunday, September 1, Denver, Colo.

-scca pro racing-

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Series Trans-Am
Drivers Butch Leitzinger , Boris Said , Scott Sharp , Ron Fellows , Paul Gentilozzi , Randy Ruhlman , Dorsey Schroeder , Tom Kendall , Michael Lewis , Tom Gloy , Stu Hayner , Sam Posey , Bob Tullius , Peter Gregg , Mark Donohue