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Apr 12, 2014 - 04:00 PM
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Long Beach: Pruett Drives EcoBoost to First Pole, Driver Quotes
Posted by: newsla on Apr 12, 2014 - 03:52 PM
Long Beach: Pruett Drives EcoBoost to First Pole, Driver Quotes


1 01 (*Scott Pruett, Memo Rojas) – 1:15.325, 94.056 mph

2 60 (*Ozz Negri, John Pew) – 1:15.366, 94.005 mph


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* Driver qualified.

** First pole position for Ford EcoBoost engine in TUDOR Championship competition.

No. 01 Telcel Ford EcoBoost Riley

Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates

SCOTT PRUETT: YOU SEEMED TO GET QUICKER AND QUICKER EVERY LAP. “That’s one of the things about Long Beach. You can continue to go faster when we’re running around the track, get a little braver, get a little braver until you kind of start just scraping the walls. I couldn’t be more proud for all the guys, everybody with Ford and for EcoBoost to have its first pole… and for Telcel. We struggled (early) in the season. Daytona was pretty disastrous. There’s been a lot of work, a lot of late hours, a lot of seven-days-a-week work for the guys and with the win at Sebring and now coming here, with the pole, it couldn’t be better. It makes all the late hours and all those seven-day weeks and for a lot of the guys who gave up their vacation, it makes it worthwhile.”

DO YOU HAVE THE CHANCE TO WIN THIS THING? “It’s certainly better to start at the front, without question. I’ve been to Long Beach when the whole race in IndyCar has been green-checkered and no yellows and I’ve been here when it’s been crash after crash after crash. You just don’t know what to expect with Long Beach. I think that’s what a lot of people enjoy about Long Beach. They don’t know what to expect. It’s going to be exciting. It’s going to be fun, and at the end of the day you don’t know who’s going to end up on top. However with that being said…you know, we unloaded and the car was fast. We kept fine-tuning it. We’ve been first or second most all the sessions. That puts you in a really good position, so you’re not chasing the car, you’re just fine-tuning it. As we look to the race, we’ll continue to do the same thing. We’ll have a little bit of the qualifying set-up in now. We’ll pull it back a little bit and work on the race set-up. A bit of a swing, since we go right to racing without any practice.”

WERE YOU AWARE OF WHERE OZZ NEGRI AND CHRISTIAN (Fittipaldi) WERE DURING QUALIFYING? “You just keep digging deeper. You just get a little braver and a little braver and pick up a little more speed here, a little more speed there. I think that’s what makes IMSA and the whole TUDOR (United SportsCar Championship) so exciting. I think it’s even more exciting that the two oldest drivers are sitting on the front row. I think that’s a great thing. And Christian is right there with us. I think part of that is knowing how to wring a little bit more out of the car. How to pick up just a little bit more speed in those areas and how to take just a little bit more chances. That comes with experience.”

No. 60 Michael Shank Racing with Curb/Agajanian Ford EcoBoost Riley

Michael Shank Racing with Curb/Agajanian

OZZ NEGRI: “Hard work works. We've been working nonstop since Sebring. The car rolled out of the trailer awesome and with the car being good the way it was we could just keep working on laps and improving. We made very little changes for qualifying. I was optimistic because I realized the lap time I did during the short session, I did on old tires and I really thought I could improve quite a bit. We did all of our homework. Ford did their job. Shank was asking me giving me two tenths (during the qualifying run) and I was digging as hard as I could and I'm just very happy. I'm very happy for John (Pew) who puts a lot of effort into this. The day today was a long day but we never stopped since the morning session until now just looking at data and looking at data and analyzing everything and it paid off. I'm very happy for Ford - they've been great with us and I can't say enough about their support and help.

“Even though we were fast in the morning we studied; we studied hard. We didn’t slack off. We looked at every little piece of data and need to study a little harder tonight to find those two or four one-hundredths of a second.”

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