DENVER (Aug. 13, 2005) – Chip Herr, of Litiz, Pa., tried to play it off as just another qualifying session, but the more he talked, the more it became apparent that winning the first Air Force Reserve Pole Position of his career Saturday morning in the SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge Touring Car portion of the CENTRIX Financial Grand Prix of Denver Presented by PacifiCare had lifted a sizable weight off of his shoulders.-30-
Herr’s time of 1:20.683 (73.933 mph) came well into the 25-minute session on the 1.657-mile circuit as he turned the quick time on the ninth lap in his No. 48 US Air Force Reserve Ford Focus, which gave Ford its first SPEED Touring Car pole in Touring Car history.
Tri-Point Motorsport drivers took the next two spots as Randy Pobst, of Gainesville, Ga., will start on the front row this afternoon with Herr in the No. 73 Mazdaspeed/Tri-Point Motorsport Mazda 6, while SPEED Touring Car practice leader Dino Crescentini, of Malibu, Calif., will start third in the No. 74 Mazdaspeed/Tri-Point Motorsport Mazda 6.
“I wish all the courses were street courses right now,” said Herr, whose previous best qualifying effort was a fourth in an Audi A4 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla., in Round Two earlier this season. “We’re really excited. The team is working really well together, and it has been a great move for me.
“We’re looking forward to today’s race, and also the rest of the year.”
In a continuation of the year-long battle between the Tri-Point Mazdas and RealTime Racing Acuras, RealTime took the next two spots behind Tri-Point as Pierre Kleinubing, of Coconut Creek, Fla., qualified fourth in the No. 43 A-SPEC/RealTime Racing Acura TSX, and Eric Curran, of South Deerfield, Mass., will start fifth in the similarly sponsored No. 45 Acura RSX.
The standing start of the Round Nine SPEED Touring Car race is set for Saturday at 6:15 p.m. (MDT).
The SPEED Touring Car portion of the CENTRIX Financial Grand Prix of Denver Presented by PacifiCare will be broadcast on SPEED Channel Sunday, Aug. 14 at 2 p.m. (EDT).
To follow this evening’s race action live, or for other information, visit www.world-challenge.com.
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