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Jun 24, 2014 - 05:38 PM
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Action Express Racing Targets 'Three-Peat' In Sahlen's 6 Hours Of The Glen
Posted by: newsla on Jun 24, 2014 - 05:36 PM
USCR News
Action Express Racing Targets 'Three-Peat' In Sahlen's 6 Hours Of The Glen


Winning at Watkins Glen in the annual Sahlen’s 6 Hours of the Glen is always special. Having done so the last two years, no one knows that as well as North Carolina-based Action Express Racing, which returns to Watkins Glen this weekend looking for a third consecutive victory with a strong two-car effort.

 

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Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi share the No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette Daytona Prototype which competes in the quickest of the four IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championship classes. Together, the duo drove to victory in the Rolex 24 At Daytona earlier this year along with co-driver Sebastien Bourdais. The pair opened the 2014 season with three podium finishes and are eager to return to the podium once again in Sunday’s Sahlen’s 6 Hour.

“Winning for the third straight year is definitely our goal,” said Fittipaldi. “Winning last year was great. We didn’t necessarily have the quickest car but the team did a great job putting us up front and giving us the opportunity to challenge for the win. I had a very good test at Watkins Glen with Continental Tire earlier this year and hopefully we can capitalize on that.”

Fighting lap after lap in the often times warm summer temperatures in the upstate New York area is no easy task at the challenging 3.4–mile road course. It’s an even greater feat for the No. 5 Action Express Racing team which has just two drivers sharing the driving duties with each spending up to three hours behind the wheel of the car.

“The Sahlen’s 6 Hours of the Glen is a very tough and high intensity race,” offered Barbosa. “It is very challenging but Action Express has shown that it knows what to do to win! Last year we had a slower start to the season and we looked at Watkins Glen as a race to pick up momentum. I'm really excited to go back this year. We’re leading the North American Endurance Cup and also fighting for the overall championship! The race will not be easy as we will have intense competition and the LMP2 cars should be quite at home there, but we know what to do to have a good result at the Glen. It’s all about preparation and that is what Action Express does the best!”

In addition to Action Express Racing’s full season No. 5 Corvette DP entry, the team also fields the No. 9 Corvette DP in the North American Endurance Cup (NAEC) rounds with American brothers Burt and Brian Frisselle as well as previous Sahlen’s 6 Hours of the Glen winner Jon Fogarty.

“It will be great to be back at Watkins Glen with Action Express,” said Brian Frisselle, who took a best finish of second in the 6 Hour in 2009. “I think Action Express Racing has to be the favorite to win the 6 hour this year. Both the No. 9 and the No. 5 car had excellent runs in 2013 and in fact a flat tire on our No. 9 car at the end of the race was the only thing that kept the team from finishing 1-2. We know Action Express is the best team in the paddock when it comes to the long races and if it's not the No. 9 in victory circle, I expect it will be our teammates in the No. 5 capping off three years in a row of winning the historic race!”

The Sahlen’s 6 Hour marks the third round of the NAEC four-round championship within a championship. The NAEC opened with the Rolex 24 At Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring.

Having shown strength in the longer endurance races through the years, Action Express Racing is motivated to take the 2014 NAEC honors, having been a factor in the 2013 championship all the way to the final lap.

“Even though it’s an endurance event, you have to approach this race like a sprint race,” said Fogarty of returning to the Glen. “When you have six hours with three drivers, you can try to lay down qualifying laps every lap. The added length of the race (compared to the sprint format events) does allow if you have an early issue in the race – you are able to get laps back. So it’s different in that respect. But everybody pushes 110% in the six hour. There’s no conservation whatsoever. It’s exciting and if you’re not going 110%, somebody else is and you’re not going to have the advantage.”

Watkins Glen is a driver favorite among the 2014 schedule and is always a highly anticipated event for teams and drivers alike.

“Watkins Glen is one of my personal favorites because it has everything a driver loves, high speed corners, huge elevation changes, beautiful surrounding environment, and a ton of history,” added Burt Frisselle, who scored his best 6 Hour finish of fourth in 2010. “On top of that it has one the best layouts of any track in the world.”

Action Express Racing sits atop the NAEC standings and second in the overall standings as the TUDOR Championship takes on Watkins Glen. With two rounds remaining in the NAEC championship, the team will continue to build on the group’s previous success at the track and aims to further extend its lead with another double podium finish at historic Watkins Glen this weekend.

It will be a busy weekend for the two-time defending champs both on and off the track. Brian Frisselle and Jon Fogarty will visit Golisano’s Children’s Hospital on Thursday before on track action begins on Friday. A one-hour practice on Friday is followed by two additional sessions and qualifying on Saturday. The Sahlen’s 6 Hours of the Glen goes green at 11:15 AM ET on Sunday with live television coverage on FOX Sports 1 beginning at 11:00 AM ET.

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