LAKEVILLE, Conn. (July 1, 2005) – Lou Gigliotti, of Dallas, Texas, earned the 22nd pole position of his SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge career and moved into third on the all-time poles won list Friday at Lime Rock Park when he ran a SPEED GT record-breaking qualifying time of 54.196 seconds (102.295 mph) on the 1.53-mile course in his No. 28 LG Pro Long Tube Header Chevrolet Corvette C6.-30-
Cadillac teammates Max Angelelli, of Monte Carlo, and Max Papis, of Miami, Fla., qualified second and third in the No. 12 and No. 16 Cadillac/XM Radio/Mobil 1/Motorola/On Star Cadillac CTS-V rides, respectively.
“It feels great. This is our 22nd pole and the first since Reno in 1997, which was also my last win,” the three-time World Challenge Champion said after ending his 17-race streak without a pole. “We’ve been testing a lot and we’ve got this thing so I can pound the pedal when I come out of a corner and it rotates and doesn’t push.”
Even though his time broke Randy Pobst’s previous qualifying record (54.362 in 2004), Gigliotti said that at the time, he didn’t feel it was going to be enough.
“We figured it had to take a 53.9 or something like that,” Gigliotti said. “I got crossed up in one of the corners and just kept my foot in it, and we still did the 54.1. [My crew chief] said ‘P1’ and I said ‘okay, that’s not going to hold.’ That’s why I was so worried, because I skidded in one corner.”
Gigliotti also said that he should have plenty of experience for tomorrow afternoon’s sixth-round race.
“The first pro race I won here, I’m embarrassed to say this, was in 1975 in the Scirroco Bilstein Cup. I finished second in a Super Vee race here. I won a Trans-Am race here in 1998. I won a World Challenge race here in ’92. I’m the only guy to ever beat Bob Sharp at Lime Rock in Club Racing. So, I’ve been around her a few times.”
James Sofronas, of Newport Beach, Calif. (No. 14 Global Motorsports Group/Tecmark Autosport Porsche 911 GT3 Cup), and five-time SPEED World Challenge Champion Michael Galati, of Olmstead, Ohio (No. 24 Volvo Cars of North America/At Speed Motorsports Volvo S60R), qualified fourth and fifth, respectively.
Galati’s performance was the first top-five qualifying effort for a Volvo in World Challenge history.
The race is set for 12:40 p.m. and will be broadcast on SPEED Channel on Sunday, July 3, at 5 p.m. All times are Eastern.
To follow Saturday’s race via live timing and scoring, visit www.world-challenge.com
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To visit the Lime Rock Park event page, use this link: http://www.world-challenge.com/2005/events/lrp