GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing's Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty will debut the team's new Pontiac Riley Mk XX bodywork in a special two-day Grand-Am test session this Monday and Tuesday at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
The Homestead test is in preparation for next month's GAINSCO Grand Prix of Miami, which is the kick-off event of a Saturday, March 29, double-header that also includes the GAINSCO Auto Insurance Indy 300.
While teams usually do a down-to-the frame rebuild after a race as gruelling as the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the GAINSCO/Bob Stallings team had to take into account the new bodywork fitment this time around for its #99 Pontiac Riley.
After being stripped down to the bare chassis, the race car was shipped to Riley Technologies in North Carolina for the new fitting and some minor chassis work.
Just prior to the Rolex 24, the GAINSCO team received back from Riley a second race car that has already been fitted with the new bodywork. Known by the team as '#98', this particular Riley was previously owned and raced by George Robinson and his team, most recently in the 2007 Rolex 24 At Daytona.
Its last appearance at a race track, however, was at Daytona Test Days early in January where the Riley was used as a show car in the debut press announcement of the Lowe's/GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Rolex 24 At Daytona team with Gurney, Fogarty and all-star additions Jimmie Johnson and Jimmy Vasser.
In the Rolex 24 later in January, the Lowe's/GAINSCO team challenged for the win for most of the race and charged back from an early Sunday morning gearbox change to take a hard-earned runner-up finish.
While the Rolex 24 Pontiac Riley - the same race car that was also used to win the 2007 Rolex Series Championships - is now back at GAINSCO's Texas race shop, the team used the time it was away to get #98 in race condition, and that is the race car the team will put through its paces at Homestead next week.
Typical of race cars that have a flat finish for testing, the Riley has been painted in red primer and will sport the familiar GAINSCO, Pontiac, #99 and Rolex Series standard decals for the two-day test.
The GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing team hauler left Dallas this morning and will arrive in the Miami area on Sunday morning prior to paddock move in. Testing is scheduled for all day Monday and Tuesday.