Bob Stallings Racing Get their Bid for a Second Championship Started on the Right Foot
The No. 99 GAINSCO Pontiac Riley and drivers Jon Fogarty and Alex Gurney got this weekend’s Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series Championship pursuit off on the right foot by winning the pole for Saturday’s season-ending Grand Prix of Miami at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
With the Daytona Prototype championship at stake for three teams, Fogarty captured his fifth consecutive pole – and sixth in seven races --with a record-breaking lap of 1:12.879 (113.612 mph) in the No. 99 car that he’ll co-drive with Gurney. He will be joined on the front row by Brian Frisselle, who ran a lap of 1:13.163 (113.171 mph) in the Florida-based No. 10 SunTrust Ford Dallara co-driven by Max Angelelli.
Fogarty broke David Donohue's year-old mark with a lap of 1:12.879 (113.612 mph).
Fogarty and Gurney enter the finale with an eight point lead (309-301) over Frisselle and Angelelli, with seventh-fastest qualifier Memo Rojas (1:13.881; 112.072 mph) and Scott Pruett another two points back at 299.
"There is no margin in this series, and you can't leave anything to chance or on the table," said Fogarty, who shared the 2007 Daytona Prototype title with Gurney. "It's so competitive and aggressive out there that we've got to operate this way all season long, and that's the zone we're comfortable in. The best thing we could do this weekend is to continue with that high level of intensity and aggression. That's what I did in qualifying, and it paid off."
Romain Dumas qualified third fastest with a lap of 1:13.237 (113.057 mph) in the Penske Racing No. 12 Verizon Wireless Porsche Riley. He will be joined on the second row by Mark Wilkins, 1:13.305 (112.953 mph) in the No.61 AIM Autosport Ford Riley co-driven by Burt Frisselle.
Qualifying on the third row were Ryan Hunter-Reay, 1:13.421 in the No. 95 Supercar Life/Edata Solutions BMW Riley shared by Scott Tucker, and Darren Law, 1:13.745 (112.774 mph) in the No. 58 Brumos Porsche Riley co-driven by Donohue.
Ham Captures Fifth Acxiom GT Pole
Nick Ham captured his fifth Acxiom GT pole of the season, running a lap of 1:18:848 (105.012 mph) in the No. 70 SpeedSource/Castrol Syntec Mazda RX-8 co-driven by Sylvain Tremblay. He will be joined on the front row by Paul Edwards, who ran a lap of 1:19.227 (104.510 mph) in the No. 07 Team Drinkin' Mate Pontiac GXP.R.
"I knew we had a good shot, because we had a fast car all weekend," Ham said. "We've struggled like everybody else this weekend with our setup, but on new tires, the car is fantastic. We made a few changes this morning that helped a bit, and then I made a sway bar adjustment during the qualifying session that got us the pole."
Kelly Collins, who co-drives with Edwards, is the only driver who can take the GT title from Farnbacher Loles Racing Porsche drivers Leh Keen and Dirk Werner. The drivers of the No. 87 Porsche GT3 need to each drive 30 minutes to share the title, while Collins needs to finish first or second and the Porsche fail to complete 30 minutes. Keen qualified fifth with a lap of 1:19/812 (103.744 mph).
Andrew Davis qualified third in the No. 57 Stevenson Automotive/BryanMark Financial Pontiac GXP.R co-driven by Robin Liddell, 1:19.554 (104.080 mph). He will be joined on the second row by Jeff Segal, 1:19.799 (103.781 mph) in the No. 69 FXDD Mazda RX-8 co-driver by Emil Assentato.
Saturday’s festivities also include a pre-race Fan Walk and autograph session at noon with the two-hour, 30-minute race going green at 1 p.m.
Great seats are available for the Oct. 9-10 NextEra Energy Resources SPEEDJAMsm Championships, featuring the series-crowning Championship finales of the Firestone Indy Lights, Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car and IndyCar Series.