Nitro’s Thomas Annunziata Earns Motul Pole at NOLA in Fourth-Career Trans Am Start
March 10, 2023
Sebring Winner Rafa Matos Tops Practice Charts
AVONDALE, La. (March 10, 2023) – Practice and qualifying are complete for the Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli’s Big Machine Vodka SPIKED Coolers TA2 Series at NOLA Motorsports Park. Thomas Annunziata in the No. 90 Nitro Motorsports Ford Mustang earned his first-career Motul pole award in only his fourth Trans Am start with a lap time of 1:39.450. Annunziata impressed the paddock when the Young Gun earned a podium finish in his second-ever start in the series at Circuit of The Americas last fall.
Rafa Matos, who won the season-opener at Sebring International Raceway two weeks ago and topped the weekend’s practice session was the fourth-fastest qualifier, and 2022 champion Thomas Merrill qualified fifth. Argentine newcomer Mariano Werner in the No. 12 Memo Corse Ford Mustang qualified seventh.
“This weekend has been great so far; we’ve got a new car this week and it's been better than our last time out,” said Annunziata. “This pole really reflects on how hard the Nitro guys work and all they do to get the cars as fast as they are. I wouldn't be here without them. It’s been a great experience; I’m four races in and I’ve had a podium and now a pole position, so I’m excited to see what we’ve got for tomorrow.”
Qualifying Top Five:
1. Thomas Annunziata, No. 90 Nitro Motorsports Ford Mustang (1:39.450)
2. Austin Green, No. 89 3-Dimensional Services Group Chevrolet Camaro (1:39.636)
3. Brent Crews, No. 70 Nitro Motorsports Ford Mustang (1:40.018)
4. Rafa Matos, No. 88 3-Dimensional Services Group Ford Mustang (1:40.151)
5. Thomas Merrill, No. 26 Bennett/HP Tuners/Mike Cope Race Cars Ford Mustang (1:40.636)
Full qualifying results can be found here.
Practice Top Five:
1. Rafa Matos, No. 88 3-Dimensional Services Group Ford Mustang (1:40.337)
2. Austin Green, No. 89 3-Dimensional Services Group Chevrolet Camaro (1:40.550)
3. Thomas Annunziata, No. 90 Nitro Motorsports Ford Mustang (1:40.566)
4. Brent Crews, No. 70 Nitro Motorsports Ford Mustang (1:40.579)
5. Nathan Herne, No. CUBE 3/Berryman Ford Mustang (1:40.842)
Full practice results can be found here.
The race will be contested on Saturday, March 11 at 12:25 p.m. ET and can be streamed live here.
The TV broadcast of the Big Machine Vodka SPIKED Coolers TA2 Series race will air on MAVTV on Thursday, March 16 at 8:00 p.m. ET.