Best in Class Once Again For Matt Bell at VIR

Best in Class Once Again For Matt Bell at VIR

Danville, VA (13 May 2011) –With a return trip to the Virginia International Raceway podium firmly set in his sights, Matt Bell had been hoping to once again qualify the No. 9 Stevenson Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro GS.R on the front row. But that effort fell just over half a second short as Bell nabbed seventh on the grid for Saturday’s Bosch Engineering 200 with a fast lap time of 2:03.682 seconds in qualifying on Friday.

The time was the best of the weekend so far for Bell, and was the leading qualifying result of the Chevrolet Camaro contingent. The result also showed marked improvement, as the No. 9 started the day 19th in the opening practice session before some tweaking from the Stevenson Motorsports engineering staff saw the machine move up to 13th in practice two.

“The Camaro is better than it has ever been, and I really feel like this is a car we can race with tomorrow,” said Bell. “There are still a couple of places where it just doesn’t have the stability that you want at corner entry, and that’s something we want to keep working on. There isn’t a huge window to work with performance wise, so it was important to get the laps in early in the session before the tires went off.”

That was exactly how Bell played the qualifying game, setting the times before returning to the pits to survey the timing screens as the minutes clicked off to the checkered flag. The spot is a cherished odd-number grid location, which will see him on the inside as the 50+ car field sprints into turn one at the start tomorrow (11:15 AM ET,

Adding to the range of possibilities for the 2.5 hour race is the heavy promise of rains at race time.

“If it rains, that could add a whole new element to the race but I don’t think it will effect our performance relative to the field that significantly,” said Bell. “This isn’t the ideal spot, as we’d like to be starting from a little bit closer towards the front, but I’m optimistic about our chances tomorrow. Hopefully though we can be like the (San Francisco) Giants and pull one out late in the ninth inning!”

Race coverage will broadcast May 13 at 1:00 PM (ET) on SPEED.

PR inquiries about Matt Bell should be directed to Matt Cleary at Sunday Group Management; 317.908.2975 (mobile) or media

For additional information:

Matt Cleary
Sunday Group Management
317.908.2975 (m)

Based in Indianapolis, Sunday Group Management is a leading motorsports management and communications consulting firm.

Sunday Group Management works with clients in a variety of motorsports categories, including NASCAR Sprint Cup driver AJ Allmendinger, Riley Technologies, GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series organization Michael Shank Racing, Continental Tire, and several teams and drivers in Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge competition.

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