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SPORT NEWS – Mentioned leads wet Trans Am qualifying at VIR

Mentioned leads wet Trans Am qualifying at VIR



Veteran Boris Mentioned and younger gun Ernie Francis Jr. locked up in an thrilling duel in Friday’s Trans Am Sequence introduced by Pirelli qualifying at wet VIRginia Worldwide Raceway. The pair traded the highest spot 5 instances earlier than Mentioned locked down the pole for Saturday’s 100-mile occasion.

Mike Skeen was quickest in TA2 Powered by AEM. Different pole winners had been Ken Twaits within the XtremeGT Lee Saunders, SuperGT; and Ken Harrell, GT.

After a pair of races on Saturday, all 5 lessons will race collectively on Sunday. The grids for the mixed occasion might be set by quickest laps for every competitor in Saturday’s races. All three options might be streamed stay on the Trans Am by Pirelli Racing App.
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Kerry Hitt held the pole for the opening minutes throughout the TA session within the No. 19 Superior Composite Merchandise Cadillac CTS-V earlier than Mentioned went to the highest. Francis Jr. took over the lead on the halfway level, and the 2 drivers started buying and selling quick laps. Mentioned prevailed within the brand-new No. 2 Weaver Racing/Strategies/SRI Efficiency Dodge Challenger, beating his personal finest with a final-lap time of 2m11.125s. Mentioned received the second Trans Am race at VIR in 2002, and got here again in 2019 to win final 12 months’s occasion for Weaver Racing.

“It was a blast,” in response to Mentioned. “The monitor was slick and difficult. It was enjoyable. Each lap, I’d get a bit extra confidence, and I saved pushing it, pushing it, pushing it.”

Mentioned had no thought of who was quick within the session.

“I didn’t even have my radio on,” mentioned the veteran. “I used to be simply having enjoyable. I had no thought in regards to the pole till I bought again to the truck, truthfully. The brand new automobile simply wants just a few extra laps. It feels actual good. It’s an evolution. That is the third automobile I’ve pushed for Pancho , and so they get higher and higher each time. I hope it’s dry tomorrow, but it surely was enjoyable in the present day.”

Francis Jr. settled for second, 0.668s again with a lap of 2m121.793s within the No. 98 One South Florida Wealth Advisors Ford Mustang. The 22-year-old six-time champion and present level chief was pleased with second.

“Qualifying went very nicely for us in the present day,” Francis mentioned. “We bought some apply time yesterday throughout our take a look at classes however didn’t run a lot in the present day earlier than qualifying. We didn’t wish to danger the automobile within the moist on a doubleheader weekend. The automobile felt nice and the rain setup we selected is one which has confirmed to achieve success. Beginning second ought to set us up nicely for the race tomorrow. I must run a constant race to get some good factors to enter Sunday’s race.”

Chris Dyson will begin third with a lap of 2m12.076s within the No. 20 Plaid Ford Mustang, adopted by Simon Gregg within the No. 59 Derhaag Motorsports Camaro, and present championship runner-up Tomy Drissi within the No. 8 Lucas Oil Camaro.

Amy Ruman had contact with the guardrail in Flip 6 within the No. 23 McNichels Firm Corvette, and Gregg went off and hit a barrier in Flip 14 late within the session. Each automobiles had been pushed again to the pits.

Skeen’s closing lap good for TA2 pole

Mike Skeen captured the TA2 pole on his closing lap, working 2m09.608s within the No. 77 LiquiMoly/Flip 14 Ford Mustang, edging out the No. 7 Silver Hare Racing Chevrolet Camaro of Rafa Matos by 0.127s.

“We had very moist circumstances so we knew visibility could be robust,” mentioned Skeen, the TA2 factors chief with three victories. “Getting house could be difficult as a result of the spray lasts for a very long time, which requires a bigger hole than typical. Because the session went on, the circumstances improved with the quickest instances coming on the finish. We had been battling the complete time and am very pleased to return out with the pole in the present day. The Stevens-Miller Racing guys put the LiquiMoly Mustang collectively nice. They’ve labored by means of just a few gremlins and gave me a automobile that I’m pleased we had been capable of placed on the entrance row.”

Matos was in search of his second pole of the 2020 marketing campaign, turning a finest lap of 2m09.735s, however {an electrical} failure throughout the motor despatched his Camaro into the pits prematurely. The drying monitor allowed Skeen to eclipse Matos within the closing moments of the session.

“We determined not danger it going out within the rain for apply, so qualifying was my first session within the moist,” mentioned Matos. “It was my first session within the moist and I spent many of the session studying the monitor within the circumstances. Three laps within the engine died, and I spent the rest of the session within the pits. We had been the perfect automobile on the market in the present day. The automobile dealt with nicely and the monitor was drying so we had been pacing quicker each time round. We’re a bit bit disenchanted, however the workforce is already engaged on diagnosing the difficulty to be prepared for tomorrow’s race.”

Cameron Lawrence was third, 2m10.542s within the No. 8 3-Dimensional Camaro, adopted by Tyler Kicera, 2m21.871s within the No. 4 Carbotech Brakes Mustang.

“It’s going to be very attention-grabbing in the beginning tomorrow, as a result of that would be the first dry lap for anybody right here this weekend,” mentioned TA2 competitor Tyler Kicera. “This has been the primary time I’ve ever pushed within the moist in a heavy automobile like my Carbotech Brakes Ford Mustang.”

Saunders, Thwaits, Horrell earn respective poles

Lee Saunders captured his third-consecutive SGT pole on his closing lap of 2m16.093s within the No. 84 Landsearch LLC Dodge Viper. Mid-Ohio winner Mark Brummond took second on his closing lap (2m16.298s) within the No. 24 SGT BMW E92 M3, demoting Adrian Wlostowski – who was on high for nearly the complete session – to 3rd with a lap of 2m16.726s within the No. 96 F.A.S.T Auto Racing Mustang.

“It was actually, actually shut for the three of us,” mentioned Saunders, who leads the SGT standings with three victories. “We bought a flier on the finish. The monitor was lastly coming round, with a ‘much less moist’ line coming in. Tomorrow goes to be a flip of a coin. It’s not speculated to rain, so qualifying might be out the window. We’ll be on slick tires, so it’s going to be a reset.”

Ken Thwaits got here out late within the session to attain his third-consecutive XGT pole, working 2m16.607s within the No. 5 Franklin Street Attire Audi R8 LMS. He was the lone XGT entrant to qualify.

Tim Horrell led GT within the No. 45 Breathless Racing Porsche GT4 Clubsport, incomes his fourth pole with a lap of 2m18.700s.

Saturday’s schedule opens with the TA/XGT/SGT/GT characteristic race at 11:20 a.m. (all instances ET), whereas the TA2 opponents take the inexperienced flag at 2 p.m. Each races might be 31 laps (100 miles) or 75 minutes.

The Sunday race – 100 miles with a 70-minute restrict – begins at 11:05 a.m. The race could have a divided grid, with TA, TA2 and XGT/SGT/GT having cut up begins.

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SPORT NEWS – Mentioned leads wet Trans Am qualifying at VIR
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