Daytona II: TRG qualifying report
TRG Qualifies on Sixth and Eighth Row for Rolex GT at Daytona Daytona Beach, FL, (July 2, 2010) - TRG's RJ Valentine and Peter Bassett qualified their Porsche 911 GT3 racers on the sixth and eighth row respectively for tomorrow morning's running ...
TRG Qualifies on Sixth and Eighth Row for Rolex GT at Daytona
Daytona Beach, FL, (July 2, 2010) - TRG's RJ Valentine and Peter Bassett qualified their Porsche 911 GT3 racers on the sixth and eighth row respectively for tomorrow morning's running of the Grand-Am Rolex Series presented by Crown Royal Reserve Cask No.16 Brumos Porsche 250 at Daytona International Speedway. TRG is looking for their third win in as many race entries in the GT series. The team has won at Virginia International Raceway and Watkins Glen so far this season.
Andy Lally, teamed with Valentine, put the No. 66 Advanced Aerosol Acquisitions/TRG/Porsche through its paces in the early part of practice this morning. Lally, a two time Rolex 24 Hour at Daytona winner, ran in lock-step with teammate Spencer Pumpelly, in the No. 67 Fisher Industrial/TRG/Porsche. The pair of sports car aces put the TRG 911s through set-up changes in the wet and dry during their stints. The duo was at the top of the time sheet in the early running.
Valentine, one of TRG's drivers in the 2009 Rolex Series GT winning car, makes a pride filled return to the hallowed ground of sports car racing.
"For me Daytona is like going to the Vatican," Valentine said. "Coming back to Daytona with TRG and Andy is a great deal for me. It is a great car, it is really handling well, I am on my game and ready for tomorrow. We have an excellent chance of winning this thing. The changing conditions today didn't phase me. I was taking bits and pieces in the rain. You take your braking points a little deeper each time until you reach the limit and adjust from there. Andy did a great job to coach me. If an old horse like me can do the times I am doing, I am happy with that performance."
"RJ had an excellent Truman Akin session and a great qualifying run," Lally said. "He did a great job in tough conditions coming back from a long layoff. With how good RJ is running I am looking for a great race tomorrow. I would like a dry track for the race, but we are also ready if it rains."
In qualifying Bassett posted a competitive time and is pleased with his first laps at the pro level.
"I put my first laps in the wet at Daytona this morning," Bassett said. "I have been here in January and ran in 17-degree weather, but never rain until today. When we got back on slicks later in the session it was really a blast. The car is fast around the banking. I was able to get my lap times down and I am happy with my qualifying effort. In the race I am looking to drop my lap times even more and give Spencer the car with a lot left."
"It was tough conditions this morning," Pumpelly said. "We didn't have a very good wet set-up on the car, so we spent a lot of the morning working on that aspect. That will pay off tomorrow if it rains. We know we have a good dry setup here, so we are prepared for every scenario. Peter is doing a great job and we are looking to have a very good day tomorrow."
Team owner Kevin Buckler will have his car and team in their usual Daytona full-press for tomorrow's race.
"It was tricky conditions this morning," Buckler said. "We went out in the rain to start and worked through the drying conditions. The guys did a great job to adjust the cars and we have a great handle on the environment we maybe racing in tomorrow morning. RJ and Peter are very steady and didn't put a wheel wrong. I am very proud of them both. Andy and Spencer have the cars dialed in - we are ready and prepared for all scenarios!"
Lally is on a bi-coastal racing adventure this weekend. He is also competing in the Maryhill Festival of Speed streetluge race in Washington state. He is commuting back-and-forth.
TRG has a great history at the World Center of Racing. Team owner Kevin Buckler has won the Rolex 24 Hour, as a driver twice, in 2002 and overall in 2003. He also won it last year as an owner. Andy Lally has two wins in the Rolex 24 and Spencer Pumpelly has a Rolex Daytona watch as does RJ Valentine.
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