The 2007 Grand American Road Racing Championship (Grand Am) was in its eighth season. A business model which controlled costs, had stable rules and avoided being on dependent of automotive manufacturers attracted many private teams. Based on the failure, of its predecessor, the United States Road Racing Championship in 1999 critics suggested that the Grand Am would suffer a similar fate. This was proving not to be the case as entries were continuing to grow with each year.

In the first season of Grand Am competition there were five classes but in 2005 the series had reduced the number to two categories:

  • Daytona Prototype (DP): This class was introduced in 2003 and was established to replace the two existing Sports Racing Prototype groups. To control costs, the cars used a tube frame chassis rather than the expensive composites used to construct most prototype race cars. Also, expenses were contained by limiting modifications and implementing rules that would be in place for five years. Approved to produce the first generation of Daytona Prototypes - for a cost of approximately $400,000 were: Riley Technologies, Doran Designs, Crawford Race Cars, Fabcar Engineering, Chase Competition Engineering, Picchio and Multimatic. Costs were also controlled by restricting the engines to production based motors supplied by Pontiac, Lexus, BMW, Porsche, Ford and Infiniti. Engine displacement was used to determine the weight of a car and whether a five or six-speed transmission could be utilized.
  • Grand Touring (GT): In 2004, there were two production-based classes: Grand Touring and Super Grand Sport which initially competed in the Grand Am Cup division. These two categories were combined into a single class in 2005. Participating in this group are manufacturers such as Porsche, BMW, Chevrolet, Mazda, Ferrari and Pontiac. As with the Daytona Prototypes, engine displacement was used to establish the weight of different makes and models.

As in the past, the season opened in January with the Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway and ended in Utah at Miller Motorsports Park. In between these two venues, there were events held at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Homestead-Miami Speedway, Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Lime Rock Park, Watkins Glen, Barber Motorsports Park, Mid-Ohio, Virginia International Raceway, Montreal, Iowa and Infineon Raceway. New for this season were Montreal and Iowa and gone from the schedule was Long Beach and Phoenix International Raceway. There was a total of fifteen events with the series competing at Daytona and Watkins Glen twice.

Round four of the 2007 Grand American Road Racing Championship was conducted at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Competitors in the Daytona Prototype and Grand Touring categories would compete in separate races. This was the third of five weekends in 2007 where the two classes would not be combined. Each race was scheduled for two-hours, thirty-minutes around the thirteen-turn 2.258-mile road course.

For the third consecutive time in 2007 the Gainsco Auto Insurance sponsored Riley Mk IX of Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty started on the pole. Sharing the front row and having their best performance of the season was the Fabcar FDSC/03 of Christian Fittipaldi and Harrison Brix. A total of nineteen Daytona Prototype competitors would take the Starterís flag and only one team would fail to finish the caution free race.
The Gainsco team entered the Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course event fresh off a victory in the Sahlenís Six Hours of the Glen. The duo of Jon Fogarty and Alex Gurney were also victorious in round two at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez. Fogarty performed the qualifying duties at Mid-Ohio and set a new lap record. Their dominance continued in the race and they led 105 of 111-laps to win by a margin of 31.629-seconds.
The pointís leader, Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas started fifth in the TELMEX Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Riley Mk IX. Rojas drove a trouble-free opening stint and maintained contact with the leaders. When he pitted and turned the car over to Pruett, they were in fifth place. Pruett rejoined the same group and battled his way to third before passing David Donohue in the final thirty-minutes for a runner-up finish.
Colin Braun and Max Papis teamed up to drive Krohn Racingís Pontiac-powered Riley Mk XI. Their best results to date were runner-up finishes at Mexico and Virginia International Raceway. Papis started the two-hour, thirty-minute event in the sixth position. Braun drove the last leg and led for three laps while the other teams cycled through their pit-stops. A late race pass on David Donohue allowed him to grab the final spot on the podium.
Team principal, Wayne Taylor enlisted the services of former Prost and Renault Formula One test driver, Jonathan Cochet. Cochet qualified the Suntrust Riley Mk XI at Mid-Ohio and was fourth fastest. For the race, he was joined by Max Angelelli who was second in the Driverís standings. During his stint, Cochet was in third place. Angelelli drove the final stretch and battled with Colin Braun but he could not make the pass and settled for fourth.
Darren Law grabbed the Brumos Racing teamís best starting position of 2007. Law and his teammate, David Donohue were gridded third in the No. 58 Porsche-powered Riley Mk XI. Law started the race and ran with the leaders. During the final rounds of pit-stops, Donohue inherited the lead for two laps but had to give up the position for fuel and tires. Unable to hold off a hard-charging Colin Braun and Scott Pruett, he settled for fifth.
There was only one Crawford DP03 in the field. The Ruby Tuesday entry was driven by Jorg Bergmeister and Patrick Long. Driveline issues in prevented the team from participating in qualifying which meant they would start the race from the back of the grid. An excellent race strategy and aggressive driving allowed Bergmeister and Long to move up the race order. After 111-laps, they had passed thirteen competitors to finish sixth.
It was a pleasant surprise to see Eddie Cheeverís extensively modified Fabcar FDSC/03 on the outside of the front row. Christian Fittipaldi missed winning the pole by just 0.323-seconds. To this point in the season, their best qualifying effort was a fourth at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Fittipaldi led a lap before passing the car over to Harrison Brix. Unfortunately, they fell out of contention and were in the eighth position at the checker.
The second Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates entry was driven by former Formula Atlantic standout, Michael Valiante and Rob Finlay. The No. 19 Z-Line Designs / Mission Residential / Make-A-Wish Riley Mk XI was gridded fifteenth for the start of the Emco Gears Classic. The duo moved up the race order and in the process, Valiante set the fastest race lap. At the checkered flag, they were in seventh place.

POS.CLASSDRIVERSCARLAPSRETIREMENTS
1DPGurney / FogartyRiley Mk XI Pontiac111-
2DPPruett / RojasRiley Mk XI Lexus111-
3DPBraun / PapisRiley Mk XI Pontiac111-
4DPTaylor / Angelelli / CochetRiley Mk XI Pontiac111-
5DPDonohue / LawRiley Mk XI Porsche111-
6DPBergmeister / LongCrawford DP03 Porsche111-
7DPFinlay / ValianteRiley Mk XI Lexus111-
8DPFittipaldi / BrixFabcar FDSC/03 Porsche110-
9DPPatterson / NegriRiley Mk XI Lexus110-
10DPJames / PewRiley Mk XI Lexus110-
11DPMatthews / Goossens / Hunter-ReayRiley Mk XI Pontiac110-
12DPSzekeres / CarpentierRiley Mk XI Pontiac110-
13DPGidley / CosmoDoran JE4 Ford109Did Not Finish
14DPFrisselle / Wilkins / FrisselleRiley Mk XI Lexus109-
15DPLewis / RuhlmanRiley Mk XI Lexus108-
16DPFrance / HaywoodRiley Mk XI Porsche107-
17DPKrohn / JonssonRiley Mk XI Pontiac107-
18DPSchramm / BellRiley Mk XI Pontiac105-
19DPAuberlen / AlhadeffRiley Mk XI BMW77Drive-Shaft


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