Stevenson Motorsports Announces Engine Change
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In 2008 the No. 57 Stevenson Motorsports / BryanMark Financial Pontiac GXP.R ran a consistently quick pace going head to head with the Banner Racing Pontiac in every round of the GT class in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16. In the end, the team came up just nine points shy of taking the overall Team and Driver championships. After running in the 2009 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona season opening round with the same chassis and engine combination they campaigned in 2008, the team decided to make a change for the balance of the season. The change paid off immediately when the team delivered the first win for the GM LS6 engine in a Pontiac at the Robert Bosch Engineering 250 at Virginia International Raceway (VIR), on April 25th.

The win came in the first race the Stevenson team ran with that motor. Stevenson Team Manager Mike Johnson explains the reason the team opted to go with a different engine from what the Banner team runs in their Pontiac GXP.R.

"When we started the GXP.R program, our initial goal was to use the same basic package as the factory team (Banner Racing) to learn and to score points for Pontiac. We knew they had a race winning combination. I knew that if we could put together a good pair of drivers, find great reliability in the car and apply some good race strategy we could be just as strong as anyone else.

"Of course, at the last race, we realized the Banner team had upped their game and even without the flat shift, we couldn't touch them on the straights. We pretty much knew right then that we were going to have to do something different if we were going to have an advantage in 2009.

"With the LS2 engine, you can only use KATECH to build the engines. They are also the engine builder used by Banner. For us to try and find a competitive advantage against our number one competitor, we really had no choice but to go to the LS6 so we could set our own course for developing and controlling engine mapping and so on. We felt the only way to control our own destiny was to work with alternate engine builders to get us moving forward. Leaving KATECH was very difficult since we had a great season with them, and our reliability was 100%, but at the end of the day, their check is written by the same guy that writes the checks to the 07 car, and we don't plan on losing to them again this year."
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