March 31, 2012

2012 Porsche 250 at Barber Motorsport

It was a day of firsts in the Porsche 250: the first victory for the Corvette DP, the first DP triumph for Spirit of Daytona and Richard Westbrook followed up his first pole on Friday with his first DP victory. Antonio Garcia, who gave Spirit of Daytona its first DP pole at Barber last year, got his second career Rolex Series victory. The team led 84 laps, with Garcia prevailing in a three-lap sprint to the checkered flag after a late-race caution.

Sylvain Tremblay and Jonathan Bomarito lapped the GT field in the No.70 SpeedSource Mazda RX-8, denying the No. 69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD drivers Emil Assentato and Jeff Segal from giving the new Ferrari 458 Italia Grand Am its first victory.


1st: Antonio Garcia and Richard Westbrook, No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP
2nd: Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty, No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Corvette DP

3rd: Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas, No. 01 TELMEX BMW/Riley


1st: Sylvain Tremblay and Jonathan Bomarito, No. 70 SpeedSource Mazdaspeed Mazda RX-8
2nd: Jeff Segal and Emil Assentato, No. 69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD Ferrari 458 Italia Grand Am
3rd: Leh Keen and Andrew Davis, No. 59 Brumos Racing Porsche GT3

Margin of Victory: 2.326 seconds (overall); one lap (GT)
Average Speed: 86.116 mph (overall); 81.458 mph (GT)

Cautions: Four for 17 laps

Photo Credit: MotorSportMedia | Halston Pitman | Jake Galstad

- Scott Pruett gambled by pitting for tires during the final caution period. It paid off, as he gained two positions and was closing on Alex Gurney's second-place car during the three-lap sprint to the checkered flag. Pruett and co-driver Memo Rojas won three of the last four races at Barber, in 2008, 2010 and 2011.

- David Donohue qualified the No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette DP in third and was running with the leaders throughout his shift. Shortly after Darren Law took over, contact with Max Angelelli in the No. 10 SunTrust Corvette DP sent the Action Express team to the garage for lengthy repairs.

- Rolex 24 At Daytona winners Ozz Negri and John Pew lost several laps after Negri took to the grass to avoid a spinning GT car. They went on to finish eighth.

- Horton Autosport rolled out a brand-new No. 73 Neo Synthetic Oil Porsche GT3 that turned its first laps in Thursday's practice. Eric Foss then qualified fourth on Friday. The team's only previous Rolex Series race was at Watkins Glen in August in an older Porsche, with Foss and Patrick Lindsay set to run the remainder of the season in the new car. Foss ran third before an off-course excursion led to an unscheduled stop. They finished 14th.

- The new No. 51 APR Audi R8 GRAND-AM was qualified seventh by Dion von Moltke, but was sent to the back of the grid for a ride-height violation due to a bolt being too low on the splitter. Dr. Jim Norman started the car, and went on to join von Moltke in an 11th-place finish.

- Magnus Racing lost a brand-new engine in Thursday's opening practice session - and switched to the powerplant that carried the team to its first victory in January's Rolex 24 At Daytona. Andy Lally led four laps and joined John Potter in a fourth-place finish to maintain the lead in the championship.

The Quotes:

" Spirit of Daytona has a magic sauce here, based off what they've done here the last few years. We tried real hard to find out their secret, but we're only about halfway there." Alex Gurney, No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Corvette DP

- "Tough day, tough weekend. We did what we could. It was exciting to see the 90 car get to Victory Lane. Now we'll try to make things better for Miami." Scott Pruett, No. 01 TELMEX/Target BMW/Riley

- "I feel great. The car was running perfectly and it was very smooth - no surprises. It was fantastic to lead a lap - that was my first pass for the lead in GT. I would have liked to have led more but we had no fuel left and I had to come in." Emil Assentato, No. 69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD Ferrari 458 Italia Grand Am.

- "A DP spun me and that put us back a bit. I was trying to be patient and trying to put the power down." Patrick Dempsey, No. 40 Visit Florida Mazda RX-8.

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