JOLIET, Ill. (July 25, 2009) – Todd Lamb, of Atlanta, Ga., set a new SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup record, by taking his fifth-consecutive pole position in qualifying for Sunday’s Round Six race, part of the Harrah’s Autobahn Grand Prix Presented by Mazda Weekend. Marc Miller, of Holland, Mich., will start second.
After trailing Miller in Friday practice, Lamb came through when in counted in the No. 84 AMG/Traqmate/Luna-C Racing MX-5, taking his fifth-straight pole position with a 2:46.142 (77.138 mph). The time was actually slower than Lamb’s fastest practice time.
“The course is quite a bit slower than it was yesterday,” Lamb said. “It’s slick. With the sun out it’s a bit warmer and I think it slowed all the cars down by a good second and a half.”
Lamb took over the top spot with his second lap around the 18-turn, 3.56-mile course, but further improved his time late in the 30-minute session.
“We picked up a little bit of time at the end of the session by coming in, checking tire pressures and letting the car sit and cool down for awhile,” Lamb recalled. “It also let me gather my thoughts; wrap my head around the track and what the current conditions were. Then, we just went out there and put in a flyer.”
Claiming the pole for Rounds Two through Six, Lamb surpassed the record for consecutive poles, four, set by Jim Daniels in 2006. Should he win Sunday’s race, Lamb will also surpass Daniels for consecutive MX-5 Cup race wins.
“It feels great to get my fifth pole,” Lamb grinned. “This is truly amazing. I’m hoping we can go for win number five tomorrow and set a record, but for now we’re forging new territory in poles and that’s pretty fun. I’ve got to thank the AMG guys for putting together a great car. We struggled a little bit yesterday in practice, but we nailed it today.”
Miller’s attempts to earn his first MX-5 Cup pole were thwarted by transmission trouble. As the current MX-5 Cup point leader rounded the final corner on his hot lap, the No. 28 Team MER/MOCA/RaceNowforAutism/MMP MX-5 popped out of third gear, costing Miller valuable time. Crossing the timing stripe with a 2:46.374 (77.031 mph), Miller would have to settle for second on the grid.
Joliet, Ill.-resident Zach Ply qualified a career-best third at his home track. Driving the No. 27 Team MER/Insight Beverage Co. MX-5, Ply entered a 2:47.308 (76.601 mph).
Newcomer Brian Domont, of Bourbonnais, Ill., will start his very first MX-5 Cup race from fourth on the grid. The No. 14 AMG MX-5 driver turned a 2:47.349 (76.582 mph).
Justin Piscitell, of Patterson, N.Y., qualified fifth. Currently second in the MX-5 Cup Championship, Piscitell turned a 2:47.559 (76.486 mph) in the No. 89 ALARA Racing/DAMG Racing/MAZDASPEED MX-5.
Ara Malkhassian will start sixth, followed by Illinois-native Nick Mancuso in seventh.
Jeff Mosing, Stan Wilson and Christopher Rhoades completed the top 10 on the grid.
Sunday’s Round Six race is set for 12:05 p.m. (CDT) and will be broadcast live on HDNet. Live timing and lap notes will also be available at www.mx-5cup.com.
Twitter updates are available at www.twitter.com/MazdaMX5Cup.
JOLIET, Ill. - Starting lineup for Sunday’s SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup Round Six race, part of the Harrah's Autobahn Grand Prix Presented by Mazda at Autobahn Country Club, with position, car number in parentheses, driver, hometown, car, fastest lap time, and speed in miles per hour.
1, (84), Todd Lamb, Atlanta, Ga., MX-5, 2:46.142, 77.138.
2, (28), Marc Miller, Holland, Mich., MX-5, 2:46.374, 77.031.
3, (27), Zach Ply, Joliet, Ill., MX-5, 2:47.308, 76.601.
4, (14), Brian Domont, Bourbonnais, Ill., MX-5, 2:47.349, 76.582.
5, (89), Justin Piscitell, Patterson, N.Y., MX-5, 2:47.559, 76.486.
6, (11), Ara Malkhassian, Sonoma, Calif., MX-5, 2:47.854, 76.352.
7, (29), Nick Mancuso, Mettawa, Ill., MX-5, 2:47.984, 76.293.
8, (31), Jeff Mosing, Austin, Texas, MX-5, 2:47.994, 76.288.
9, (92), Stan Wilson, Mt. Juliet, Tenn., MX-5, 2:48.031, 76.271.
10, (33), Christopher Rhoades, Dallas, Texas, MX-5, 2:48.211, 76.190.
11, (25), Mark Jenkins, Fairview, Texas, MX-5, 2:48.310, 76.145.
12, (24), Richard Fisher, Fairview, Texas, MX-5, 2:48.843, 75.904.
13, (22), Mark White, Madison, Wis., MX-5, 2:48.908, 75.875.
14, (20), Pat Womack, Burr Ridge, Ill., MX-5, 2:48.994, 75.837.
15, (13), Lyonel Kent, Powell, Tenn., MX-5, 2:49.105, 75.787.
16, (26), Tim Probert, Houston, Texas, MX-5, 2:49.347, 75.679.
17, (47), Mike Jenkins, Fairview, Texas, MX-5, 2:49.435, 75.639.
18, (04), Ben Anderson, Minneapolis, Minn., MX-5, 2:49.841, 75.458.
19, (44), Steve Bottom, Newport Beach, Calif., MX-5, 2:49.872, 75.445.
20, (00), Harrison Williams, Houston, Texas, MX-5, 2:51.084, 74.910.
21, (68), Michael Vitarelli, Brooklyn, N.Y., MX-5, 2:51.387, 74.778.
22, (54), Brad Adams, New Orleans, La., MX-5, 2:52.018, 74.503.
23, (75), Alfred Ciaola, New York, N.Y., MX-5, 2:52.983, 74.088.
24, (55), Susan Krohn, Houston, Texas, MX-5, 2:58.114, 71.954.