Rain cancels Grand-Am qualifying at Homestead

UPDATE More heavy rains are reported to cycle through the Homestead area until early afternoon, just before the 1:00pm (EST )start of the "Grand Prix of Miami".

04/28/12 Rain canceled qualifying for Sunday’s Rolex Sports Car Series Grand Prix of Miami at Homestead-Miami Speedway, putting the championship contenders together at the front of the field with points leader and Ft. Lauderdale-based Starworks Motorsport on the pole in the Daytona Prototype class.

With rainy conditions continuing, GRAND-AM and Homestead-Miami Speedway officials opted to cancel Saturday’s scheduled qualifying session for the Grand Prix of Miami and replace it with optional practice. Today’s Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Kia 200 remains set for 2:45 p.m. EST.

It gives the championship-leading No. 8 Starworks Motorsport Riley-Ford of Enzo Potolicchio and Ryan Dalziel the pole for tomorrow's two-hour and 45-minute race.

“This morning [in practice], we were really fast in the rain," Potolicchio said. “I was happy with our setup for rain and actually, I want the rain to stay around here for the race tomorrow. I think we have a really strong package for the rain."

Potolicchio will be joined on the front row by North Palm Beach resident John Pew, who along with Miami’s Ozz Negri won January's 50th Rolex 24 At Daytona in the No. 60 Michael Shank Racing Riley-Ford.

"I think we were pleasantly surprised this morning from the first lap of how much grip we had on the [rain] tires," Dalziel said. "Aquaplaning was as minimal as you can get when you have that much rain.

"Sometimes you go into a wet weekend and you're not really positive because so much can change… But I'm actually pretty confident that we can have a consistent car and have consistent tires and stay out front until the end."

The No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP of Richard Westbrook and Antonio Garcia, winners earlier this month at Barber Motorsports Park, will line up third, with the No. 2 Starworks Riley-Ford of South Florida resident Alex Popow and Lucas Luhr starting fourth.

Defending Rolex Series champions and Grand Prix of Miami race winners Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas will start fifth in the No. 01 TELMEX Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Riley-BMW.

John Potter and Andy Lally will start from the Grand Touring class pole in the No. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche by virtue of leading the point standings. The No. 59 Brumos Racing Porsche of Leh Keen and Andrew Davis will roll off second, Parkland resident Sylvain Tremblay and Jonathan Bomarito in the No. 70 SpeedSource Mazda RX-8.

Teams will have an additional 30-minute practice tomorrow morning, prior to the start of the Grand Prix of Miami, rain or shine.

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