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BEACH, CA. — (National Distribution) January 29th, 2007. O�Connell Racing
(OConnellRacing.com), a southern California based Grand American
Rolex Series and NASCAR road racing team announced today it completed the Rolex
24 at Daytona with a top10 finish of 42 entries in the GT class and a 23rd
overall finish with a record breaking 78 entries total for the historic race.
Team drivers Kevin O�Connell and Michael Speakman were joined by Flying Lizard ALMS
GT2 driver Lonnie Pechnik, IMSA winning driver Kevin Roush and NASCAR driver Jason
Bowles. Kevin O�Connell commented, �our goal was to achieve a top ten finish
in our first Rolex 24 and to accomplish that we elected to run our 996 GT-3 in lieu
of the new 997 due to what we thought would be durability issues for the 997�s.
To some degree we were right and the consistency of the 996 captured a great finish.
Much of this success is credited to Barry and Roy and the rest of the crew in their efforts to get the car out of the pits as quick as possible. The crew was
up for 36 hours and was executing pit stops every 90 minutes or so through the heat, cold, rain, and several unexpected situations.�
After qualifying, the team started the race 20th. Within the first
few laps of the race driver Lonnie Pechnik radioed in that the car had picked up
a vibration and was forced to pit for a new set of tires. That dropped the
team to 37th position in GT and the team battled throughout the night
and various bouts of rain to break into the top ten. Driver Michael Speakman
stated, �early Sunday morning it rained hard and even the cars at low speeds with
rain tires on were sliding off the track. Track officials went to a full course
yellow and it wasn�t until I handed the car off to Lonnie that the track started
to dry out and we went back to slicks.�
Kevin Roush completed the final two stints of the race and moved into the top 10
with 45 minutes to go in the race after the German favorite #85 Recaro Porsche 997
fell out of the contention with fatal engine failure.
Regarding television coverage, ratings for the opening broadcast on FOX Sports still
to come, the audience tuning in for the anchor live portions of telecast on SPEED
alone were enough to make this year’s Rolex 24 the most watched Grand-Am Rolex Sports
Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve race in SPEED history.
According to Nielsen Media Research, overall household viewership rose 26 percent
(.43 to .54) from year-over-year totals while the network also enjoyed a three-day
increase of 28 percent over last year, as 458,000 viewers tuned into the
telecast versus 359,000 in 2006.
Numbers also increased significantly within certain demographic areas, as Men 18-49
grew 72 percent and Men 18-34 rose 19 percent
About O�Connell Racing: OCR is a California based road racing team
that races in North America in the Grand American Rolex Series and various NASCAR
series. The team competes in select races in all of these respective series in an
focused effort to bring the highest visibility and branding opportunities to its
marketing partners currently managed by SpeedSport Branding, LLC: X Satellite/Direct
TV, General Environmental Management, Inc., Taleo Grill (Modern Mexican), Mothers
Polishes-Waxes-Cleaners, Dragon Optical, Crow Enterprises, HPC Coatings, www.MicroFiberStuff.com,
Neo Synthetics, Sparco USA, General Pacific Group, LLC, IMMS, Wine Pavilion, StunningGuns.com,
BASF and Arnett Designs.
Technical Director: Roy Montgomery (949) 721.1769.
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