BRASELTON, Ga. (April 15, 2005) – On the day taxes were due, Nic Jonsson, of Buford, Ga., earned a modest payback in his No. 27 Tasker Products/Tecmark Autosport BMW by pacing the SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge Touring Car practice day at Road Atlanta as part of the sportsbook.com Grand Prix of Atlanta.-30-
While Jonsson turned his chart-topping mark of 1:34.371 (96.894 mph) during the morning session, RealTime owner and driver Peter Cunningham scored the afternoon portion’s best time with a 1:34.398 (96.866 mph) in his No. 42 A-SPEC/RealTime Racing Acura TSX. Bob Stretch, of Dallas, Texas was third in his No. 98 Wheels America/Okell’s Fireplace BMW 325i.
Running a limited schedule in 2005, Jonsson said he thought his BMW was shaping up well for the weekend after some adjustments were made following the SPEED Touring Car season-opener at Sebring.
“We definitely gained some power here after Sebring, where we struggled a little bit,” Jonsson said. “We got some power back and the Close Call Tecmark car is set up pretty close to perfect, so hopefully the tires will hang in there where I can push the car to the limit.”
BMWs and Acuras ruled the top four as Cunningham’s teammate, Pierre Kleinubing, of Coconut Creek, Fla., finished fourth (1:34.681, 96.577 mph) in the similar No. 42 Acura TSX. Memo Gidley, of Novato, Calif., used a strong showing in the first session to settle into fifth in the No. 48 US Air Force Reserve Ford Focus, posting a time of 1:34.806 (96.449 mph).
Cunningham currently holds the qualifying record (1:35.272), but that mark appears to be in jeopardy as the top eight SPEED Touring Cars all locked in practice times under the record.
SPEED Touring Car qualifying is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m., and the race, which will be broadcast live on SPEED Channel, is set for Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m. (EDT).
To forward this story, use this link: http://www.scca.com/News/News.asp?Ref=284