Sunday
Jun102007

TEAM NEWS: TRG ADDS TO VICTORY COUNT WITH WIN AT WATKINS GLEN

Photo by John Thawley Watkins Glen, N.Y., June 9, 2007 -- Team TRG claimed its second GT-class win for 2007 as drivers Andy Lally, Spencer Pumpelly and RJ Valentine piloted the No. 66 CRG Porsche GT3 to a solid victory in the Sahlen's Six Hours of The Glen at historic Watkins Glen International Raceway.By winning Round Seven of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve, the Petaluma, California-based TRG team made it two wins in the last three races - having won the U.S. Sports Car Invitational just three weeks ago at Laguna Seca.

Lining up 22nd on the starting grid, RJ Valentine took the green flag and maintained a strong pace before turning the controls over to New York native and 2004 Six Hours of The Glen winner Andy Lally. Andy ran a methodical first stint, displaying his trademark precision driving as he climbed to fifth-place at the one-hour mark and up to second-place within the first 90 minutes of the race.

At just under two hours into the enduro, Lally handed the controls over to teammate Spencer Pumpelly. A three-time Rolex Series race winner, Pumpelly focused on running consistent laps and conserving the equipment, especially the brakes and tires. He stayed in contention, keeping the No. 66 Porsche GT3 in the top-three over the ensuing 55 laps around the grueling 3.4-mile Watkins Glen road course.

With time winding down, Lally re-entered competition for the final one hour sprint to the checkered flag. Stalking the GT-class leading No. 87 Porsche of Richard Westbrook and Synergy Racing, Lally utilized his extensive Watkins Glen experience to make the decisive pass for the lead with just 20-minutes remaining in the race.

In the closing laps, Lally held off the challenge of eventual second-place finisher Dirk Werner in the No. 87 Farnbacher Loles Motorsports Porsche GT3 to win by a margin of just over 2.5-seconds.

"This was an incredible win for us," said Lally. "The entire team ran like clockwork today and our strategy and car set-up put us in a great position to fight for the win. Being from New York and having my family here, I was very motivated to win - but when I looked in my mirrors and saw Dirk (Werner) coming, I knew I was going to have to push hard. He was very fast and does not make mistakes, so I knew I was going to have to drive 100% flat out with no mistakes as well. Spence and RJ both did a great job as usual and our TRG Porsche was a rocket. Kevin, Lars, Gary, Jeff, Flemming, Billand all the guys deserve a lot of credit for this. The entire TRG crew is excellent."

"I'm very excited about our win today," said Pumpelly. "The TRG Porsche was the best handling car I have driven. During the race the car was so balanced I could drive it anywhere on the track. I'd like to thank TRG and the crew for doing a killer job."

"What a fantastic win for us," said Valentine. "The guys (Andy and Spencer) really drove an amazing race. I know these guys are special and really deliver the goods. Plus, today is my birthday and I could not have asked for a better present than this."

"Winning the Six Hours of The Glen is absolutely HUGE for us," said TRG team owner Kevin Buckler. "This is our second win in three races and it puts us back in the championship hunt. I can't say enough about what a fantastic job Andy, Spencer, RJ and the entire team did today. We have always done well here and now we have wins in both the Daytona Prototype and GT classes here at The Glen. The No. 65 car was up front right until the end and even with some tranny issues my friends in the No. 64 and No. 67 cars drove very very well. We have a major announcement this week about our future racing plans and this really helps. Wow, what an exciting race!"

The second TRG Porsche entry, the No. 64 Lowe Racing GT3 with drivers Jim Lowe and Jim Pace ran a consistent race with competitive lap times. Starting 23rd on the grid, the driver duo amassed 90-laps over the six hours and finished in 20th-place.

The third TRG Porsche entry, the No. 65 Maxwell Paper Products GT3 with drivers Ross Smith, Dan Dileo and Brian Sellers ran a competitive race, actually leading near the mid-point of the race. They were in strong contention for a podium finish when with about 45-minutes remaining Sellers got caught up in the aftermath of a crash by the No. 97 Corvette driven by Vic Rice. Luckily, Sellers was uninjured, but the damage to the TRG Porsche put it out of the race and the driver trio was credited with a 15th-place finish.

The final TRG Porsche entry, the #67 T.Weisel Partners/Driving for Donors GT3 of Brent Milner, Murray Marden and Rolex Series newcomer John Potter ran consistent and competitive lap times as well, using the six hour event to gain valuable experience. The No. 67 started in the 24th spot and earned an 18th-place finish.

Round Eight of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve, the EMCO Gears Classic 2007, will be contested at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on June 21-24 and will be broadcast via tape delay by SPEED Channel. The GT race will air on June 24 at 12 p.m. EDT and the Daytona Prototype race will air the same day at 8 p.m. EDT.

« TEAM NEWS: Banner Pontiac GXP.R comes back from two lap deficit to finish on the podium at Watkins Glen | Main | TEAM NEWS: GAINSCO dominates at The Glen, as Gurney, Fogarty fight back to capture team's second victory in Sahlen's Six Hours »

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