Paul Fix and Rafa Matos Grab First Trans Am Poles of 2018 at Sebring

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Paul Fix and Rafa Matos Grab First Trans Am Poles of 2018 at Sebring


Tim Kezman and Andrew Aquilante lead production classes

SEBRING, Fla.  [March 3, 2018] – Paul Fix and Rafa Matos secured pole position for tomorrow’s pair of Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli competitions at Sebring International Raceway, the Series’ opening round for the 2018 season.  Joining the two in setting fast laps for their classes were Tim Kezman and Andrew Aquilante in TA3 and TA4.

Fix, in the No. 4 Ford Mustang, captured his 14th career pole with a 2:01.644 lap around the iconic 3.74-mile course.  For his efforts Fix will start at the head of the multi-class TA, TA3 and TA4 competition, slated to run for 27 laps (100.98-miles) or 70 minutes, whichever comes first.  Sebring marks a return to the Series for Fix, a veteran of Trans Am who made his debut in 2002, amassing 65 starts, 11 wins and 21 podiums over the course of his career.

“I’m happy to be back in Trans Am,” said Fix.  “It’s my first love in racing.  And I’m happy to be back in a Ford Mustang, my favorite car.  Tony Ave puts together a great car and has a great crew; it’s a first-class operation. They care so much and have put together a first-class car for me.  Sebring, Trans Am, it’s a beautiful sunny day—what more could you want?”

Fix has three previous Trans Am starts at Sebring, a frustrating 17th in 2016, a third place finish in 2015, and a 23rd place in his second career start in 2001.

“The competition is going to be tough,” said Fix.  “There are a couple of cars that are really fast, but pole position means a lot as well—getting out there in front.  Sebring is such a fast racetrack; so hopefully, before I run into traffic, we’ll be able to do what we need to stay out front.  I’m looking for a great race.”

To stay in front Fix will need to keep at bay a talented TA class top five, led by defending TA class champion Ernie Francis, Jr., in the No. 98 Frameless Shower Doors Ford Mustang.  Francis qualified behind Fix by seven hundredths of a second turning a 2:01.714 to Fix’s 2:01.644.  Francis, a native of Florida, led much of the Sebring race in 2016 before suffering a part failure in the final stages.

TA class newcomer Lawrence Loshak, in the No. 2 Pennzoil/ ETE Reman/ GoShare Chevrolet Camaro, was third quick with a time of 2:02.041—on his second and final lap of the session.  Last year’s Sebring winner Cliff Ebben, in the No. 36 Stumpf Ford/McMahon Group Ford Mustang, and Chris Dyson, in the No. 20 CD Racing Ford Mustang, completed the TA class top five with laps of 2:03.220 and 2:03.807, respectively.

The TA class qualifying top ten also included, in order, Simon Gregg, Amy Ruman, David Pintaric, John Baucom and Daniel Urrutia, Jr.


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