Continental Tire Series - Jonsson and Michael Galati Take Infinity Audio Kia To Another Top 5 Finish
Lime Rock, May 29, 2011: After qualifying tenth for the Memorial Day Classic at Lime Rock Park, Nic Jönsson and Michael Galati drove their #10 Infinity Audio Kia Forte Koup to Top 5 finish in the Street Tuner (ST) race. After trying out a different pit strategy that ultimately cost the car a few track positions, the drivers were able to move the car forward and into fifth place. Although the team felt that, if given a few more laps they would have been podium contenders, they were very pleased with the results.
The Kia sister car, however, did not have the strong finish they were hoping for at the home track of its’ two drivers. Adam Burrows and Trevor Hopwood’s #12 Infinity Audio Kia Forte Koup had trouble early on in the race. Trevor Hopwood qualified the car in the fifth spot, and both he and Burrows were ready to take the car to the podium. However, during Hopwood’s stint he went off track and had to pit with damage to the car. The pit stop lasted over twenty minutes. They went back out with Adam Burrows behind the wheel. After only turning a few laps, Burrows had to bring the car back in with major issues with the brakes and steering, which caused the team to park the car for the remainder of the race. The Kinetic engineers and management decided it was better to save the car from further damage since the next race at Watkins Glen is just next week. Although it was a disappointing finish for the #12, the #10 car was able to show off the Kia name with its’ Top 5 result and added points towards the manufacturer’s championship quest.
Nic Jönsson, driver, #10 Infinity Audio Forte Koup: “Today’s top five finish was awesome, but I think today’s run was not the greatest. Our strategy today was a little different. We decided to go with only one pit stop, which I don’t think worked out as well as we had hoped. We had to do fuel, tires, and the driver change on our only stop when everybody else had already come in for fuel and tires. That caused us to go from second to fourteenth, so we had to work really hard to get back into the Top 5. If we had another five or six laps, I think we would have been able to get closer, if not on, the podium, because a lot of the guys in front of us had their tires really going off. We gained a lot of points in the Manufacturer’s Championship, which was the goal for this weekend, so I’m pretty pleased with the top five and the car in one piece.”
Michael Galati, driver, #10 Infinity Audio Forte Koup: “I think it was fantastic for us. We had a top five finish, which was really good. In qualifying, I had a little bit of an issue but I started getting used to the car and the car started working better. My best lap during qualifying was my last one, so I was pretty excited for the race. We had a great car, and Nic was great, so I’m very happy with the result.”
Russell Smith, owner, Kinetic Motorsports: “I’m really delighted with the race today. It’s very disappointing that the #12 didn’t finish because they were really excited to go racing here, but they had a few issues that ended up requiring a lot of work. They went back out for a few laps after we thought we fixed the car and everything appeared to be going well. Then Adam reported that everything had just started to go away pretty hard. There were problems with steering and braking. It was very disappointing and they had to park, but fifth for the #10 car makes us really happy! It puts us just a little bit closer, and I think it’s really going to be a tight championship run at the end of the season. That’s what it’s all about, and that’s what makes it fun, so we’re really excited.”
Trevor Hopwood, driver, #12 Infinity Audio Kia Forte Koup: “My stint in the car went well. I tried to save everything for Adam and not take any chances, I had a couple shots to move up but something was going on with the front end. There was some smoke coming out and then two laps later, I lost my brakes and went into the wall. I brought it back in for repairs and the boys did a great job fixing it. After it seemed like everything was fixed, I threw it over to Adam, thinking that he would take the car to the end. Unfortunately, things did not work out the way we hoped and the car didn’t finish the race because of the prior issues.”
Adam Burrows, driver, #12 Infinity Audio Forte Koup: “Once it was my turn in the car, it didn’t feel as good as we like for it to feel. It wasn’t more than three laps in before I lost power steering. Then after that I lost the brakes and the ABS. It was a pretty dramatic couple of laps that I was out there, so I didn’t get to do much with the car. I actually had to use my knee to brace the steering wheel when going through a left-hander, but it eventually got to be too much and the left front bound up and the car lost it. We had to pull off, which was unfortunate, because we had a good qualifying. We’re just looking forward to getting the car back in shape for the Glen and we’ll go from there.”