Grand AM » 31 July 2006
Krohn goes back-to-back at Barber.
"As usual, Jan did a fantastic job and helped me a lot," Angelelli said, "Wayne did too, but it's difficult, because you need to perform and try to win but, at the same time, you have to finish the race to pick up points. This championship has raised the game so much. It has been a pleasure to race here in this championship, and even to finish second, fourth or top five, it's already a good result."
Mike Rockenfeller and Patrick Long picked up their second-straight podium with third place to put the #23 Ruby Tuesday team back in the frame. It was their sixth podium in ten starts in what has been a streaky season for the Alex Job Racing team.
Fogarty and Gurney, who led for 18 laps, came home fourth for their fourth-straight top-five result, while Adrian Fernandez and Mario Haberfeld completed the top five in the #12 Lowe's Fernandez Racing Riley-Pontiac.
TRG Pontiac co-drivers Marc Bunting and Andy Lally extended their lead in the GT class with a fourth victory of the season, and now hold an eleven-point advantage with only two races remaining on their schedule.
Bunting started the #65 machine third on the grid, and ran consistently in the top five throughout his opening stint. He handed control to Lally on lap 22, during the race's second full-course caution, and left his co-driver to drive the event's final 75 laps to claim a second-consecutive victory. Closest rivals Robin Liddell and Wolf Henzler finished second.
"We came into the race with only one goal," Bunting noted, "We wanted to make sure that we finished ahead of the #72 car. They've been real tough all season and, with only two races to go, it's going to be a tight battle to the end, so we want to make sure we have as big of a cushion as we can heading into the last race. The whole team did a great job this weekend."
Lally passed Liddell for the lead shortly after a restart, the two battling nose-to-tail for an extended portion of the race's mid-point. Later cautions shuffled the #72 machine further behind the #65, allowing Lally and Bunting to score their 16th top-four GT finish in just 18 races with the Pontiac.
"There wasn't a lot of room for error for us this weekend," Lally pointed out, "I have to thank all the TRG guys and [team owner] Kevin [Buckler] for their excellent calls with strategy today. We stretched our fuel a little bit, hoping a caution would come out and, fortunately, we were just at the edge when the yellow came. The #72 was stronger in some parts than us, and we had the advantage in others. This is a good win towards the championship but, with two races left, anything can happen."
Liddell and Henzler hasn't finished lower than sixth in any of the eleven races this season and, with just eleven points separating them from the leaders, the championship picture is still unclear.
"We lost a little bit of practice time and couldn't qualify," said Henzler, who was forced to start at the rear of the grid due to an engine change on Saturday, "but we made some adjustments during the race, and the car really came to us. However, it's hard to start from the rear and make up time getting through the traffic."
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