ELKHART LAKE, Wis. – Cadillac Racing drivers Johnny O’Connell and Michael Cooper will start the first of a double race weekend at the Pirelli World Challenge GT Championship presented by Cadillac from the third row in GT.
O’Connell (Flowery Branch, Ga.) brought his No. 3 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe up to temperature and turned a lap of 2:05.848 on his third circuit of the four-mile, 14-turn Road America track good for a fifth place qualifying effort. Teammate Cooper (Syosset, N.Y.) posted his time of 2:06.025 on his fifth lap in the No. 8 Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe. The duo will start the 50-minute race from the third row. The race will take the green flag at 5:30 p.m. ET today.
“I think the qualifying outcome was a little better than I expected,” O’Connell said. “That is about as good a car as I have ever had here at Road America. I am not happy to qualify fifth, but with the performance circumstances we are engineering to I’ll take a third row starting spot here today. All three of my laps were within a tenth, so that speaks to the way the car is handling and the way the Cadillac Racing team has been working to give me a good Cadillac ATS-V.R Coupe for the race.”
Cooper will be working against 28 other cars and Mother Nature as it is expected to near 90-degrees at race time.
“I am pretty satisfied with that effort in qualifying this morning,” Cooper said. “We are still struggling with straight line speed, so with that aspect fifth and sixth place starting positions are about as good as we could have hoped for today. I think we can race from there this afternoon. There will be a lot of heat in the track, so we will have to manage our tires over the 50-minutes.”
The Pirelli World Challenge Road America Grand Prix presented by Cadillac can be viewed via live stream at http://MotorTrendOnDemand.com starting at 5:30 p.m. ET today. The race will be televised on the CBS Sports Network on Sunday, July 3 at 3:00 p.m. ET.