KLAUS GRAF TAKES OVER POINTS LEAD WITH FOURTH CAREER POLE ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (August 20, 2005) Trans-Am series Rookie-of-the Year contender, Klaus Graf assumed the championship points lead by setting the fastest qualifying time for the Rumble at...
KLAUS GRAF TAKES OVER POINTS LEAD WITH FOURTH CAREER POLE
ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (August 20, 2005) Trans-Am series Rookie-of-the Year contender, Klaus Graf assumed the championship points lead by setting the fastest qualifying time for the Rumble at the Road at Road America. After setting a blistering lap time of two minutes, 9.159 seconds (112.828 mph) around the 4-mile road course in the No. 7 Jaguar R Performance XKR, Graf parked the car and scored his fourth career pole. Both Tomy Drissi in the No. 5 Transporter2 the Movie Jaguar and Paul Gentilozzi in the No. 1 Jaguar R Performance XKR had top-five times but fell to sixth and seventh respectively late in the session.
The experienced Rocketsports team gave the German native a race car quick enough for his fourth career pole in only eight series events. With the pole, he earned three bonus points and surpassed Randy Ruhlman for the lead in the champion standings heading into tomorrows event. Graf and his crew will now get the Jaguar ready for the race. "We had a really good car for qualifying," declared the new championship point's leader. "I had a good lap and knew it would be hard for anybody to go quicker. For the race we need to stay clean. You can't make many mistakes, if you're stuck in the gravel that's it, really. We have a good race car so we should be in great shape for the race."
Hollywood native, Drissi always enjoys the challenge of Road America. In 2004, Drissi recovered from an 18th place starting position to finish sixth. This year he'll start his Jaguar from where left off. "This race will be one of the most competitive we have had in a while," said Drissi. "Klaus turned a really fast lap and second through sixth is divided by around a second. This track allows for some passing so I think we'll be mixing it up, I can't wait."
The Lansing, Michigan resident, Gentilozzi plans on enjoying his 205th career Trans-Am race when the green flag drops for the Rumble at the Road. "This has been a relaxing weekend and I plan on enjoying the race," said the series all-time wins leader. "This weekend I don't have all the activities that Champ Car brings so I am taking it easy. I had the opportunity to interact with the fans at the autograph session and the fan forum, usually I find myself with meetings or have Champ Car duties and miss those. I am not concerned with starting seventh, it puts the three Rocketsports cars together at the start of the race to work our way to the front."
Rocketsports Racing has four Trans-Am victories at Road America, two by Gentilozzi (1999 &2000), and one each by Scott Pruett (2003) and Tommy Kendall (2004). In 2004, Kendall's victory was Jaguars first of four wins for the production based, four-valve AJ-V8 engine.