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Lexus Prepares For Final Four G-A Races With Title Lead

  • TORRANCE, Calif. (July 28, 2006)

With the finish line in sight, Lexus heads to Birmingham, Ala., for this weekend's Barber 250 at Barber Motorsports Park holding a tumultuous six-point lead in hand as the series begins a stretch of four-races-in-six weeks to close out the 2006 Rolex Sports Car Series schedule.

The manufacturer will once again power three cars, led by the Ganassi Racing duo of Scott Pruett and Luis Diaz in the #01 CompUSA Lexus/Riley. To date, the pairing has earned three victories and seven top-three finishes this season as they enter this weekend's action in second-place in the series Driver's Championship. Pruett is the winningest driver in Daytona Prototype history with 10 victories – all coming with Ganassi Racing, which has earned 11 of Lexus' 12 Rolex Series race triumphs.

The Ganassi entry is joined by a pair of cars from the Michael Shank Racing stable. Oswaldo Negri and Mark Patterson will team in the #60 Flight Options Lexus-Riley, while Mike Borkowski and Tommy Constantine partner in the #6 Playboy Racing/Mears Motor Coach Lexus. The Shank team has six top-five showings to its credit, including a pair of second-place finishes – one coming at the prestigious Rolex 24 at Daytona. Patterson currently ranks ninth in the title chase.

There will be one new factor involved in this weekend's action as Lexus debuts its new 5.0-liter engine, similar to those generally used throughout the series, in hopes of generating better fuel mileage amongst its gains.

With four wins this season, Lexus-powered entries have now won 12 races and 18 pole positions in 36 Rolex Series events since entering the series in 2004.

Friday's practice sessions begin at 10:40 a.m., with qualifying scheduled for 2:15 on Saturday. The green flag will wave for Sunday's Barber 250 at 3:00 p.m. (all times EDT) with the race scheduled for 109 laps/250 miles with a two-hour and 45-minute time limit. The event will be televised live on SPEED.

Lexus Daytona Prototype Performance Index

Race, Started/Finished  #01   #02  #6     #39    #51    #60   #61
Daytona 24              9/20  2/1  12/27  13/11  12/17  5/2   --
Mexico                  1/1   --   13/3   --     --     --    --
Miami                   4/3   --   13/18  --     --     15/22 --
Long Beach              1/1   --   17/9   --     --     15/5  --
Virginia - Qual.        1/22  --   13/10  --     --     9/6   --
Virginia                3/25  --   10/23  --     --     6/13  --
Laguna - Qual.          7/6   --   8/10   --     --     2/2   --
Laguna                  6/10  --   10/13  --     --     2/11  --
Phoenix - Qual.         2/2   --   12/5   --     --     6/17  --          
Phoenix                 2/1   --   5/23   --     --     17/16 --
Watkins Glen 6-Hour     1/7   --   16/14  --     --     8/4   --
Mid-Ohio                26/21 --   11/7   --     --     14/9  --
Daytona                 1/3   --   14/6   --     --     8/10  27/21
Barber
Watkins Glen
Sears Point
Salt Lake City
 
2006 Lexus Daytona Prototype Laps Led
(750 of 1683 possible)
#02 - 272
#01 - 320
#39 - 74
#60 - 52
2006 Lexus Pole Positions (4) – Scott Pruett, Mexico, Luis Diaz, Long Beach, Pruett/Diaz, Watkins Glen; Pruett/Diaz, Daytona;

2006 Lexus Wins (4) – Dixon/Wheldon/Mears, Daytona; Pruett/Diaz, Mexico;
Diaz/Pruett, Long Beach; Diaz/Pruett, Phoenix

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