TEAM NEWS: LGM Corvettes of Gigliotti and Peterson come to early grief in wild WCGT race in Charlotte

Photo by John Thawley Charlotte N.C. (May 26, 2007): Lou Gigliotti and Doug Peterson, coming off a great weekend in Utah had nothing but trouble come there way in Round 4 of SCCA Pro Racing’s SPEED World Challenge GT Championship Series on the banked Lowes Motor Speedway track in Charlotte. Peterson finished 13th after early contact sent him to the pits on lap one and Gigliotti was classified in 16th after a variety of problems put Lou on pit road for an extended period.

“From heroes to zeros,” was how Lou Gigliotti, of Dallas Texas, summed up Round 4 at Lowes MS. “At Utah Doug and I were on the podium and 4 or 5 days later we get nothing! It was a really weird race but most of the crashing was behind me!”

That about summed up the race for Peterson and Gigliotti which started off bad and never got much better as unfortunately some of the crashing was right behind Gigliotti as both Doug and Lou were hit from behind in multi-car conflicts as the field streamed into the tight chicanes.

Doug Peterson got smacked going into the second chicane and was barely able to maintain control as a rear tire deflated while he was coming up to speed on the banking. Peterson limped his 3-Dimensional Services Corvette to the pits for a tire change and repair joining the race several laps down.

Doug drove a clean race from then on but could never recover from his opening lap misery and finished his Chevy Corvette C6 in 13th several laps down.

“Doug’s car had the air ducts for the brakes smashed and he cooked his brakes as the race wore on so he had to limp home to finish,” Gigliotti said. “There was nothing wrong with the brakes mechanically. They just overheat if there is no cool air ducted to them.”

Lou Gigliotti fared better early but not much as his LG Pro Long Tube Headers Chevy Corvette C6 got smacked in the rear on lap one pushing a fender into a rear tire.

“The tire was smoking and the officials wanted to black-flag me for smoking,” said Gigliotti. “We argued with them and told them that it wasn’t oil but tire smoke. By the time I was going to pit the carbon fiber had burned off and the tire wasn’t smoking so I didn’t have to stop.”

Lou Gigliotti crept to the pits as the first half ended with the oil pressure in his Corvette dropping to near zero. The race at that point was pretty much a memory for Gigliotti who never took the restart choosing not to chance oiling up the track for everyone else should the engine go really bad.

“Something in the crank broke I think,” said a dejected Gigliotti. “The car had about 5 pounds of oil pressure. I went back out for the white and checkered flag laps to try to finish a position better and get some points.”

The problems and poor finish at Lowes dropped Lou Gigliotti from 5th to 8th in the driver’s championship with 70 points. Doug Peterson dropped from 8th to 9th in the championship. Doug also has 70 points but is classified 9th due to the tie breaker.

Cadillac took over the Manufacturer’s Championship lead over Chevrolet 25 to 24 with Dodge and Porsche tied for 3rd with 15 each.

Round 4 from Lowes Motor Speedway will be broadcast on Saturday, June 2 at 4 p.m. (EDT) on SPEED.

Round 5 of the SCCA SPEED World Challenge GT championship Series will be at Watkins Glen International in New York on June 10th.

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