For the first time ever this weekend in Mexico City, the #99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Pontiac Riley will wear colours other than red, as a set of striking white and green stripes down the side will set Alex Gurney, Jon Fogarty apart from the rest of the field for the Mexico City 400k.
Coupled with the new paint are Spanish-language “GAINSCO Seguros de Autos” logos on the nose and tail, all of which are tied to the Dallas-based insurance company's expanded marketing efforts to the booming Hispanic auto insurance market.
“Over half of GAINSCO's customer base are originally from Mexico, so in a way it's a home game for us,” team owner Bob Stallings said. “We're excited to be racing here.
“It's a long season and we've got plenty of opportunities to get back up atop the leaderboard. A good, solid finish at Mexico will go a long way toward doing that — and who knows, maybe that ever-elusive first win will finally manifest itself.”
Last year, Gurney was quick in practice, and fast enough throughout the race to keep pace with the leaders despite going a lap down early. With that in mind, he said he was confident of pushing for the team's maiden victory.
“We're all ready to start fresh in Mexico, and I really love this track,” he said. “The esses that constantly pick up speed and the Peraltada are fantastic corners to drive. We know we should have a quick car, so we just need to run a clean race.”
Team-mate Fogarty will be making his first appearance on the Mexican circuit and he said he was looking forward to the experience.
“It's a little bit stressful having to come to a new track in such a competitive series, but I believe we can come away from here with a strong finish,” he said. “Of course our goal is to win, but it's a long season still and we want to climb back into the points fight, and you can't do that in a single race.”