Visteon Panoz Racing Qualifies on GT1 Pole at Road Atlanta
20 June 1998SPORTS CAR GRAND PRIX AT ROAD ATLANTA
The Visteon Panoz Racing Team qualified well for tomorrow's 3 hour and 45 minute Virgin Interactive WSC and GT race. The #4 Visteon Panoz GTR-1, driven by Andy Wallace, qualified on the GT1 pole and sixth overall, with a lap time of 1:16.225 at 120.905 mph. Raul Boesel qualified the #5 Visteon Panoz GTR-1 third in the GT1 class and eighth overall with a 1:16.946 lap at 119.77 mph. Fourth in the GT1 class and tenth overall was Doc Bundy in the #45 Visteon Panoz GTR-1, with a 1:17.574 at 118.80 mph.
Andy Wallace, #4 Visteon Panoz GTR-1, qualified on GT1 pole: "The Visteon Panoz was superb, with good balance. The Michelin tires that we chose were excellent and are perfectly suited to this track and the high heat (over 90 degrees). The competition will be tough, but I think we'll be a force in tomorrow's race."
Raul Boesel, #5 Visteon Panoz GTR-1, third in GT1: "My run was quite good. Due to the weather yesterday and some lost time in this morning's practice session, I didn't have a lot of practice in the car. We did make some changes in the car this morning that were quite good, so I am happy. The car seems to be consistent.
"I haven't been here in a while, but I can tell you that Road Atlanta has improved a lot. It's still a challenging track -- there are a few places on the track where your heart rate goes way up. It's a fun track to drive."
Doc Bundy, #45 Visteon Panoz GTR-1, fourth in GT1: "The Visteon Panoz is very close to being perfect for the race.. The I was able to keep with the Porsche for a lot of the session, which is reassuring. I had a bit of oversteer in the slow corners, but the car is very well balanced, which is important on Road Atlanta.
"It's the first time that I've qualified a car in over two years, so I'm a bit rusty. I know the history of this place -- the race pace is generally much different from the qualifying pace, so it'll be a good race."
Tony Dowe, managing director, Panoz Motor Sports: "I'm very pleased for the Visteon Panoz Racing Team. Running three cars was a whole step into unknown territory for us, especially after Le Mans and Mid-Ohio last weekend but the team's done a really good job to bring it on together. To be on pole on a circuit like this in front of Porsche is very good, although the race will present a different situation. The closeness of the cars shows how competitive it is out there. I think everyone can look forward to a good race."
Tomorrow's race will be televised on Speedvision on Monday, June 22 at 9pm and Tuesday, June 23 at 1am.