Crash.Net Grand AM News
Tight title fight heads for Watkins Glen
6 August 2009
Three teams and six drivers fighting for the Daytona Prototype championship are separated by only one point leading up to Friday's Crown Royal 200 at Watkins Glen International, the ninth round of the Grand Am Rolex Series season.
All six drivers fighting for the championship lead have won at Watkins Glen International. Tied at the top are #99 GAINSCO Pontiac Riley drivers Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty and #01 TELMEX Lexus Riley drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas with 216 points.
Only one point back are #10 SunTrust Ford Dallara drivers Max Angelelli and Brian Frisselle with 215 points.
Michael Shank Racing driver Michael Valiante is fourth in the standings with 199 points, one point ahead of Penske Racing team-mates Romain Dumas and Timo Bernhard.
Frisselle and Mark Wilkins won the 2008 Crown Royal 200, leading all but three of the 82 laps. While Frisselle joined SunTrust Racing for 2009, his place alongside Wilkins in the #61 AIM Autosport Ford Riley is occupied by his brother, Burt Frisselle.
When Pruett and Rojas won the Sahlen's Six Hours of The Glen in June, it was on the historic circuit's 3.4-mile long course. Friday's race will be on the 2.45-mile short course, and teams will have to make the adjustment from the second-longest to the shortest event in race duration on the schedule.
The Rolex Series Acxiom GT class returns after a three-year absence to the Crown Royal 200. In 2005, TRG took GT honours in the event, with Paul Edwards and Jan Magnussen winning in the #64 Pontiac GTO. Over the past three years the event has showcased only the Daytona Prototype class.
Edwards returns with defending GT series co-champion Kelly Collins in the #07 Drinkin' Mate Pontiac GXP.R and are currently second in the standings. Leh Keen and Dirk Werner won four races this season - including the Sahlen's Six Hours - to lead the points (247-222).
There are two new cars entered in the GT class for Friday's race. Bryce Miller and Kevin Roush share the #48 MarquisJet/IPC Porsche GT3 in the debut of Miller-Barrett Racing. PR1 Motorsports returns after a four-race absence, with the team converting its Pontiac GXP.R to a BMW M6. Max Hyatt and Jeff Westphal will co-drive the #32 Miracle Sealants entry.