Heures du Mont-Tremblant Pre-Race
May 22, 2004 - The #2 CITGO-branded Pontiac Crawford Daytona Prototype,
with drivers Milka Duno, Andy Wallace and Jan Lammers, will start the 6
Heures du Mont-Tremblant on Sunday, May 23, 2004 in 14th position on the
grid. This event is the 4th race on the 2004 Rolex Sports Car Series
Championship schedule. The Circuit du Mont-Tremblant in Quebec, Canada is
celebrating its 40th year as one of Canada's premier road racing circuits.
The race week began with a Promoter Test Day on Thursday, May 20 and it was
the first time that many of the drivers were to experience what has become
known as a very challenging track. Because of this the sessions were both
red and black-flagged multiple times throughout the day due to many
off-course excursions. The end result was that the team drivers completed
only 11 laps - out of a total of 4 sessions - for the entire test day. The
team had hoped that the test day would generate an opportunity to cycle each
of the drivers in the car and offer them valuable lap time - but it was not
The first Practice Session on Friday, May 21 began at 10:00am and was a
combined practice for all classes. At 11:00am the practice session switched
to Daytona Prototypes only and ended at 11:30am. The result was a 7th
position with a best lap time of 01:32.498 - only 3.185 seconds off the lead
car. The second Practice Session, also on Friday, was again a combined
all-classes session that was only 40-minutes in length, starting at 2:40pm
and ending at 3:20pm. In this session the team placed 12th. These two
sessions, while again delayed multiple times, still yielded valuable gains -
with each driver cycled and excellent set-up work accomplished.
Saturday brought both the third Practice Session and the Prototype
Qualifying Session. The practice started at 9:55am and lasted until 10:50am.
Although again plagued with black-flag conditions - two in fact in the last
20 minutes of the session - it was a still a productive session. The car
finished in 8th position and gained half a second on the lead car over
Friday's first practice session.
The Qualifying Session, only 15 minutes long, began at 1:30pm and ended at
1:45pm. Milka was once again strategically selected to qualify the car -
making it her 3rd straight duty as the race qualifier, having qualified the #2
CITGO-branded Pontiac Crawford Daytona Prototype at both Miami and
Phoenix as well. In this qualifying attempt Milka was able to complete 8
laps and scored her best lap time in lap 5- a 01:34.615 with a top speed of
100.830mph - which placed the car 14th overall on the grid for the start of
Sunday's 6-hour endurance event.
"I had hoped to complete more laps behind the wheel during my first visit to
this track," said Milka. "But with all the delays we experienced on test day
and during the practice sessions all of the drivers were limited in their
time behind the wheel. With that being considered, I am ok with where I
placed the car for the start. I had hoped to place higher, but am happy that
I was personally able to increase my lap times over what they were on
Friday. This is a very challenging track and it will be very interesting to
see how the race unfolds on Sunday."
"I've raced here before, but this is my first trip around this circuit in
the CITGO Pontiac Crawford Daytona Prototype," said Andy. "We've been able
to make a lot of progress to make up for the disappointing test day. We are
still behind the opposition, but I don't think we're far behind. I'm fairly
happy with the way things are going, but of course you always want to go
quicker, you always want to be first. But it is a 6-hour race and I think
it's going to be quite rough out there because of the nature of the track.
You're turning left and then right and then left and then right and there
will be quite a bit of contact I think between the leading cars. That never
really bothers me - the car is quite strong on the sides - so I think it
should be a really good race.
The 6 Heures du Circuit Mont-Tremblant race will be broadcast LIVE on the
SPEED Channel starting at 11:00am ET on Sunday, May 23. Additional event
information is available at www.lecircuit.com .
CITGO, based in Tulsa, Okla., is a refiner, transporter and marketer of
transportation fuels, lubricants, petrochemicals, refined waxes, asphalt and
other industrial products. The company is owned by PDV America, Inc.,
an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A.,
the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. For
more information on CITGO visit www.citgo.com .
Additional information on drivers Milka Duno and Andy Wallace is available
at www.milkaduno.com and www.andywallace.com ,
respectively. For more
information on the Grand American Sports Car Series please visitwww.grandamerican.com .