8Star Motorsports and the #25 Prototype Challenge driven by Luis Diaz and Sean Rayhall qualified in third position at the Continental Tire Road Race Showcase at Road America for the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship (9 August).
For Free Practice two and first of the day, 8Star started with Diaz at the wheel. Diaz, who has vast experience of Road America, had really great pace and was to post some really fast laps around the 4mile circuit. Luis “Chapulin” Diaz posted a best time of 2m00.514s to record the second fastest time in the Prototype Challenge class.
Practice three had Rayhall starting in the car and leading the practice for the initial segment of the session. After several cautions, the #25 Prototype Challenge lost some pace in traffic and was only being able to post a 2m02.191s. Diaz jumped in to close the session, but two red flags with fewer than 20 minutes to run left him with no chance of posting a faster time.
The qualifying session showed much improvement for 8Star, as Diaz qualified in third position after struggling in the previous practice. Only the top three cars could lower the two-minute barrier and “Chapulin” Diaz posted a 1m59.931s, five tenths slower than both first and second place in qualifying.
“The weeked has been positive until now and we ended up qualifying in third place,” said Diaz. “We have made some changes that definitely improved the car for the qualifying as these short weekends give you a short time to put the car up to speed. Sean (Rayhall) has been really fast in the car, I will start the race and I believe he will give a good fight at the end of the race. Having the car in third place for tomorrow makes me really happy as it gives us a better chance to fight for the race once the green flag is waved.”
Teammate Rayhall added: “I feel really optimistic about our chances tomorrow at Road America. We started on the wrong track, but as the weekend went on we got on the right track along with our engineers. I believe our car is a better race car than it is a qualifying car, so I’m really happy about Luis (Diaz) positioning the car in third place for tomorrow’s Continental Tire Road Race Showcase at Road America.”
For the Cooper Tire Prototype Lites powered by Mazda, Race 1 of the weekend at Road America, Christian Potolicchio, with an incredible driving performance, finished in second position after starting in fourth. Christian, who quickly jumped to third position in the initial laps, was able to get to second place and keep it till the end of the race for his best season finish. Lamont Harris and Enzo Potolicchio didn’t have a great day, with Harris finishing in 11th position and Enzo not finishing after contact with another car.
“I am really happy with today’s race!” said Christian. “We were able to finish in second place, my best finish racing in the North America, and we continue to get valuable points for the team championship. This is the second weekend in a row that we finish on the podium, which is important for the team. I would really like to thank Sean Rayhall and all the 8Star team for all their help and for having the car ready week in and week out.”