Drissi Tops Trans Am Charts in Portland Practice
July 28, 2018
Merrill comfortably leads TA2
PORTLAND, Ore. [July 28, 2018] – Tomy Drissi set the pace for the Trans Am West Coast Championship presented by Pirelli’s opening session of the weekend at Portland International Raceway (PRI) today in the TA class, while Thomas Merrill continued his domination of the TA2 class.
Drissi, the current TA class points leader, led the way with a 1:11.976 lap around the 1.967 mile, 12-turn circuit from behind the wheel of his No. 8 GoShare Chevrolet Camaro fielded by Burtin Racing.
Drissi brings with him a history of success at Portland, with a 2009 victory at the Oregon track playing a crucial role in securing his 2009 Trans Am Championship and marked his only win of the season. Come qualifying this afternoon Drissi will look to replicate his pole setting effort from 2009, a 1:11.179 lap.
Greg Pickett, in the No. 6 Flavor Insights Ford Mustang, was second quick in the session with a 1:12.982, seeking a repeat of last round’s West Coast action at Sonoma Raceway where he out-dueled Drissi after a 100-mile battle for the overall victory.
In TA2, Thomas Merrill and the No. 81 Big Diehl Racing Ford Mustang, continued their streak atop the class’ West Coast charts having led every practice session, qualifying session and race in the 2018 season. Merrill also finished atop a 30-plus TA2 car race, composed of both TA2 West and TA2 competitors, at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, adding to his accolades.
The No. 81 would turn a 1:15.695 lap, nearly three seconds faster than the nearest TA2 competitor, David Smith, in the No. 5 Shockwave Suspension Seating Chevrolet Camaro, who turned a 1:18.635 lap of his own. Michael Mihld, in the No. 55 Track Fanatic Chevrolet Camaro, was third quick in the TA2 class with a time of 1:19.800.
Oli Thordarson, in the No. 22 Alvaka Networks/ Trackspec Chevrolet Camaro, the single entrant in the TA3 class, acquitted himself well with a 1:19.533 lap, strong enough for fifth overall in the session.
The Trans Am West Coast Championship will return to the track at Portland International Raceway later today for qualifying sessions, commencing at 4:50 PM PT.
All classes will participate in a single multi-class contest spanning 100.47 miles, 51 laps around the Portland circuit on Sunday, June 29, at 11:05 AM PT.
Round 4 of the 2018 Trans Am West Coast Championship Remaining Schedule:
Saturday July 28, 2018
4:50 PM – 5:10 PM TA/TA3/TA4 Qualifying
5:15 PM – 5:35 PM TA2 Qualifying
Sunday July 29, 2018
11:05 AM – 12:35 PM Trans Am Feature Race
All times pacific
Live Timing: All on-track sessions can be followed at www.gotransam.com and on the Race Monitor app available on Windows, Android, iOS and OSX.
Text Commentary: Updates provided throughout sessions on Twitter at @gotransam.
About The Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli:
The Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli began igniting the passion of motorsports fans across the world in 1966 and has been home to some of the greatest names in road racing. Today, Trans Am continues to honor its legacy, while challenging the status quo in racing, through meaningful racing platforms and a driver-oriented focus. The Trans Am Series is operated by The Trans Am Race Company, LLC (TARC), and oversees the management and marketing of the Trans Am Series, presented by Pirelli. SCCA Pro Racing sanctions Trans Am events and provides operations services to the Series.
2017 Champions include: Ernie Francis, Jr. (TA), Gar Robinson (TA2), Mark Boden (TA3) and Brian Kleeman (TA4).
For more on the Series visit www.gotransam.com, “like” Trans Am on Facebook at www.facebook.com/gotransam, or follow Trans Am on Twitter @gotransam