Foster Claims Second Grand-Am KONI Challenge Grand Sport Pole of 2008 Friday at Barber Motorsports Park
DiLeo to start second in Saturday’s 250-mile race at Alabama track
Atlanta native Joe Foster will sit on the front row for his home Grand-Am KONI Challenge Series Grand Sport (GS) race Saturday at Barber Motorsports Park after posting a competitive time at the beginning of Friday's qualifying session.
Foster set a lap of 1:38.294 (84.237 mph) on his first lap, and held onto the fast time after the 15-minute session was interrupted due to a black flag for two stopped cars on the course. A spin by the No. 88 Ranger Sports Racing Hop-A-Jet Worldwide Jet Charter Porsche 997 of Matt Pritiko and the stalled No. 70 Hickham Motorsports Ford Mustang GT of Steven Hickham Sr. brought out the black flag, setting the stage for a sprint.
With a bunched field and limited amount of time, Foster's time held firm, and he will lead the field to the green flag of the 250-mile (109-lap) or two-and-a-half hour race. It marks the second pole of the season for Foster and co-driver Scott Maxwell in the No. 55 Hyper Sport Ford Mustang GT - which earned the honor prior to its victory last month at Mosport International Raceway - and the second straight front row start for the duo.
Dan DiLeo will start second in the No. 77 Maxwell Paper Products Porsche 997 after setting a time of 1:38.515 (84.048 mph). DiLeo will co-drive the No. 77 with Joey Hand. Andrew Davis earned the third starting position after the time of the No. 07 Cardiosport Racing Euro Motorworks/Porsche of Lexington Porsche 997 of Terry Heath was disallowed because the car was too low. Davis, who turned a time of 1:38.635 (83.946 mph), shares the No. 18 Motorsport Technology Group Morris Animal Foundation/Meisha's Hope BMW Z4 with Billy Johnson.
Jon Miller, in the No. 83 BGB Motorsports PerformanceDrink.com Porsche 997 he shares with Craig Stanton, will start fourth after a time of 1:38.800 (83.806 mph), while Steve Cameron was fifth quick after a lap of 1:38.817 (83.791 mph) in the No. 99 Automatic Racing Mobile Shop/Make-A-Wish BMW M3 he shares with Rob Finlay.
KONI CHALLENGE SERIES DRIVER POST-QUALIFYING QUOTES
Joe Foster (No. 55 Hyper Sport Ford Mustang GT): "It's been a great day. It was a strange session with a break in the middle. Obviously, we did not think this was a Mustang track. We can't do more than two fast laps with the heavy car here, but it worked out for us with the black in the session. So, whoever got a good lap early did it. I got a good lap early, and that did it. I waited early to find a hole and waited to get a good clean lap. I ran a lap with a few of the Automatic Racing BMWs, and we all got a good lap. There's no doubt that some of the longer, faster tracks favor the Mustangs. Barber is more of a technical track. We don't get even out of third gear here. It was an aggressive, brutal lap on both the car and the tires, but it held up well and we got the pole. I can't thank the Multimatic guys enough for fixing our car. We had a major fuel issue this morning, but they found it and fixed it, and it ran like a top."
Andrew Davis (No. 18 Motorsport Technology Group BMW Z4): "We've made a lot of progress with the Motorsport Technology Group BMW. It took a while early today and even yesterday to find grip, but the guys worked super hard right up to the very last minute. I'm very proud of them. It's nice to get a decent lap in there that put us up near the front. We'll be decent for the start tomorrow. Maybe we will get to lead some laps. We shuffled our driver lineup for this race. Normally, Darren (Law) and I will co-drive in the Porsche. But with the Rolex Series race being so tight, we decided it would be better if we switched and made sure the cars were utilized. I've been looking forward to hopping in the BMW and driving with Billy Johnson as my teammate. I'm excited about it. It's nice to be up front."