Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Leads Morning Practice at VIR, Second Fastest Overall

April 27, 2007
No. 23 Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Porsche powered Crawford

Image © 2007 Regis Lefebure

ALTON, Va. — The Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team topped the speed charts during this morning’s practice session at Virginia International Raceway in preparation for Sunday’s Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve VIR 400K. While the team set the pace early, their fast lap of 1:46.701 (110.327 mph) was the second fastest overall during Friday’s track test day.

Driver Patrick Long, 25, piloted the No. 23 Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team Daytona Prototype around the 3.27-mile, 17-turn road course improving his times on virtually every lap until he claimed top honors on lap 14 in the morning session.

“This is a good way to start what I consider the middle part of the season where we’ll be competing on the more traditional road courses,” Long said. “It’s great for the guys on Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team because they’ve never given up and never let their heads drop during our adversity early in the season. So, the important thing now is to stay persistent and focused and build on this rather than becoming satisfied with this single accomplishment.

“There’s no relaxing in the Grand-Am Rolex Series Daytona Prototype class. These teams are as professional as it gets and they are going to keep pushing and pushing, so it’s never about staying where you’re at, it’s about staying ahead of the curve and improving during every session.”

Long’s co-driver, Jörg Bergmeister, of Leverkusen, Germany, put the Alex Job Racing prepared Daytona Prototype through its paces during Friday’s second practice session with a focus on alternate settings and running on worn tires. Despite no attempt to set the fast lap for the afternoon session, the Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team finished second fastest on the day.

“It’s a great start to what we hope is going to be a great weekend,” team owner Alex Job said. “We have high hopes and high expectations this weekend. The car is good, but we know we have to keep making progress to keep the Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team up there at P1. This is our first session of the season finishing P1 and it was a great job by the entire team.”

Long and Bergmeister will continue their quest of the team’s first race win of the season with a final practice session Saturday morning, April 28, followed by Grand-Am Daytona Prototype qualifying set for 2:40 p.m. EDT. Race action for the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve VIR 400K can be seen ‘Live’ on Speed Channel on Sunday, April 29 beginning at 1 p.m. EDT.

Ruby Tuesday is one of the nation’s leading casual-dining restaurant companies, with more than 800 restaurants worldwide. It was founded in 1972 by Sandy Beall, who serves as Chairman & CEO today. The company is committed to having uncompromising freshness and quality with passionate employees who take pride in delighting guests with an excellent dining experience. The burger-centric menu features an assortment of handcrafted burgers, its fresh garden bar, premium baby back ribs and a variety of other signature entrees. Ruby Tuesday, Inc. is traded on the NY Stock Exchange (symbol:RI). To find out more about Ruby Tuesday, visit

For more information regarding the Ruby Tuesday Championship Racing Team, visit or contact Adam Horn at or (660) 864-8927.