LONG BEACH, Calif. (April 9, 2006) – After completing an agreement late Saturday, Whelen Motorsports has announced that NASCAR Craftsman Truck star Todd Bodine, of Chemung, N.Y., will pilot the team’s No. 30 Whelen Motorsports Chevrolet Corvette C5 in today’s SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge Round Three race, part of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. -30-
Bodine, 42, will start 12th on the grid after turning a 1:28.516 (80.039 mph) in Saturday morning’s qualifying session.
This afternoon’s SCCA SPEED GT race will be the second race of the weekend for Bodine, as he drove a Scion tC in Saturday’s Celebrity Challenge race, where he finished fourth overall and won the Pro category.
After taking the first laps of his SPEED World Challenge career in qualifying, Bodine, who is third currently in the Craftsman Truck standings, said it took little time for him to adjust to the Corvette.
“I had an idea,” Bodine said when asked if he knew what to expect from his car on the street course. “The horsepower, braking, from what I was used to in the Scion, it just took a while to get used to.
“I spun out twice, but didn’t hit anything. I got used to it, cut a good lap and it got better and better as I went. It’s just getting used to the braking, acceleration and torque in the motor. It was fun, and it’s going to be a blast in the race.”
For the 29-lap race, Bodine said he wasn’t going to place any expectations on himself.
“I don’t know,” Bodine said. “This is a great class, a lot of good drivers. I don’t know what to expect. I just want to stay out of everyone’s way and have a good time.”
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