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Apr 08, 2014 - 08:06 PM
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Ken Stout Racing Endures Through Mechanical Issues at St. Petersburg
Posted by: newsla on Apr 08, 2014 - 08:04 PM
Sports Cars
Ken Stout Racing Endures Through Mechanical Issues at St. Petersburg


Round One of the Pirelli World Challenge 2014 season took place March 30th as part of the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg weekend. Which was to have been a double-header weekend for series race teams with Rounds 1 and 2, became a single race weekend after Saturday's race was canceled due to heavy rain. On Sunday morning, the KSR team lined up against some of the best racers in the country.

 

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Heat issues had relegated the team to the 20th position on the GTS grid that featured 49 cars between the two Pirelli World Challenge classes running. "We have been battling a heat issue with our new Precision turbo charged combination," said Team Principal Ken Stout, "and we were forced to pull driver Robert Stout in during Saturday morning's wet qualifying session. He was P11 at the time but the track was drying out and just got faster as the session went on. It's just continued growing pains of this new platform."

On Sunday, with the five-second board posted for the standing start, the entire field screamed to life as the lights went out signalling the start of the race. Stout launched the No. 86 Lucas Oil supported Scion FR-S and charged down the front straightaway picking up seven positions before turn 1! "I spun the tires just a little bit so it could have been even better but it was a heck of a start for sure," said the 2010 TC Drivers' Champion."I planted it right up against the wall and just kept driving around people all the way through turn 1. These standing starts are about as exciting as anything can be and today we had a good one!”

Click here to ride with Stout during the exciting start: http://youtu.be/-P16qq0GKjE

Unfortunately the new power plant was compromised at some point over the weekend and only made a couple of laps into the race before losing 30 lbs of oil pressure. The car was still running and data shows it never lost all oil pressure so the team had hopes it might be something else, but unfortunately the metal in the filter indicated otherwise. "There are no obvious smoking guns," said Team Principle Stout. "We are looking into possible heat issues that might have compromised the oil line. The engine has been pulled and its on its way to be analyzed and repaired. It was still running so hopefully nothing major was hurt."

After months of work during the off season the car was very good. The handling was much better after the extensive work done last winter and during Friday's practice sessions the FR-S was stopping with the proficiency of the Camaros - thought to be the platform with the best stopping capabilities in the class. The new Liberty transmission was perfect, and the power was noticeably better as Stout drag raced one of the class' Camaros down the straight away and the driver was only able to pull up beside Stout and not around him. Last year the Camaro would've made the pass by mid straight away with no issues so the revised FR-S is a competitive car with plenty of room for improvement.

"There are many things that need to be addressed as it was the first time in full on competition in 2014, but the platform is significantly better than last year and we expect very good results once the car becomes stable," said Ken Stout. "As always we must thank Scion and Lucas Oil for their incredible support with this new effort. None of this would not be possible without them and the rest of our outstanding partners!

Ken Stout Racing acknowledges its tremendous partners:

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