THE 24-HOURS OF LE MANS
RUNNING TOP 10 RESULTS AT HOUR 14
THE 24-HOURS OF LE MANS
RUNNING TOP 10 RESULTS AT HOUR 14
LE MANS, FRANCE -RIS- With approximately ten hours left in the most famous annual 24-hour endurance sports car race, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the race is turning into a battle between powerhouse Audi Sport Team Joest and Toyota Racing.
At present, the #2 Audi R18 e-tron quattro leads the two Toyota TS030-Hybrids, #8 and #7, by less than a lap in the LMP1 category.
The Audi is being driven by eight-time Le Mans winner Tom Kristensen, Loic Duval and Allan McNish.
The #8 Toyota is currently being driven by Sebastien Buemi. His co-drivers are Anthony Davidson and Stephane Sarrazin.
The #7 Toyota co-drivers are Alexander Wurz, Nicholas Lapierre and Kazuki Nakajima.
The 24-Hours of Le Mans
Circuit de le Sarthe
Le Mans, France
23 June 2013
LE MANS, FRANCE -RIS- In its 90-year history, the 24-Hours of Le Mans endurance car race has had its share of drama, and this edition was no less so.
The race opened with Dane Allan Simonsen’s fatal accident at Tertre Rouge, but ended in a record-setting win for Audi - the second in a row for the R18 e-tron quattro and the 12th since the marque’s first win here at the Circuit de le Sarthe in 2000.
And standing another victory taller was another Dane, Tom Kristensen, who won Le Mans as a co-driver for the record ninth time, further distancing himself from such Le Mans legends as Jackie Ickx and Derek Bell.
LE MANS, FRANCE -RIS- Danish Aston Martin driver Allan Simonsen died today in an accident during the first hour of this year's running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Simonsen, 34, co-driver of the #95 AM Vantage GTE program was fatally injured as his car spun off-track at the Tertre Rouge corner ten minutes into the twenty-four hour race. It appeared the rear of the #95 slipped out as the car entered the long right-hander on to the Mulsanne Straight. Simsonsen corrected, and the car snapped back and headed directly into the guard rail.
He was transported to the circuit medical center where he succumbed to his injuries.
A Tribute to Ralph Sanchez
A statement from Scott Atherton on the passing of Ralph Sanchez
The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón joins the global motorsports community in mourning the loss of Ralph Sanchez, founder of the Grand Prix of Miami, who passed away Monday at the age of 64.
United SportsCar Racing Confirms Strategic Alliance
with ACO and Le Mans
SEBRING, Fla. - The link between Le Mans and professional sports car racing in North America lives on into the future. Officials from United SportsCar Racing – a result of unifying the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón and GRAND-AM Road Racing – today signed agreements with the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) that will keep the Le Mans brand of sports car racing firmly entrenched in North America.
“The ACO is delighted through this alliance partnership that goes beyond a simple licensing agreement, to continue our collaboration that started 14 years ago with Don Panoz and the creation of ALMS, and which has been of great benefit to both partners,” said ACO President Pierre Fillon.
“This strategic alliance will lead to a close collaboration between the ACO and United SportsCar Racing to promote, develop and reinforce endurance racing in North America. Through this global agreement, I am convinced endurance racing will continue to be in safe hands in North America for many years to come.”
Audi Sweeps at Sebring with Hybrid Power
SEBRING, Fla. _ RIS - Audi Sport extended its remarkable run at Sebring International Raceway on Saturday. Marcel Fassler, Benoit Treluyer and Oliver Jarvis won the 61st Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida in their No. 1 Audi R18 e-tron quattro – the first hybrid car to win at Sebring and in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón.
Treluyer drove a storming final two stints. He took fuel with 20 minutes left but maintained his lead over teammate Tom Kristensen in the No. 2 Audi. Kristensen, Allan McNish and Lucas di Grassi placed second.
“For sure at the end with the traffic it was really hard to see in the mirror,” said Treluyer, who has won the 24 Hours of Le Mans the last two seasons with Fassler and Andre Lotterer. “I just had to keep the gap. Tom was doing good on the out laps and could warm the tires better than me. But after that I could go quicker than he and I could bring it home.”
United SportsCar Racing To Debut In 2014
SEBRING, Fla. - RIS - With uniqueness and modernity at the forefront, the new United SportsCar Racing platform was revealed (#TheReveal) today at Sebring International Raceway, resulting from the merger of GRAND-AM Road Racing and the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón.
United SportsCar Racing will debut in 2014 with the season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona.
“The new name says it all,” said GRAND-AM President and CEO Ed Bennett. “In only six months since we announced the merger, GRAND-AM and the ALMS have taken huge strides to become one organization that will redefine sports car racing in North America. United SportsCar Racing reflects the fundamental spirit of how we are working together toward a common goal.”
Tequila Patrón Returns as Presenting Sponsor
of 2013 American Le Mans Series
BRASELTON, Ga. - RIS - Next week marks the start of the 2013 season of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), and Tequila Patrón is back for the fourth year as the Presenting Sponsor of the entire 10-race competition.
Excitement on the track will be at an all-time high this year, as Extreme Speed Motorsports (ESM), the Tequila Patrón-sponsored ALMS team owned by veteran driver Scott Sharp, recently announced that it will field two Honda Performance Development (HPD) ARX-03b prototypes – in the P2 class – to replace the GT-class Ferrari 458 Italias the team entered in previous years.
“Watching those Patrón Ferraris at ALMS races was a spectacular sight, but it will be even more exhilarating to watch the extraordinary power and performance of these new P2 cars,” commented Matt Carroll, Chief Marketing Officer at Patrón Spirits International. “We’re looking forward to our fourth year of sponsoring the American Le Mans Series, and we’re thrilled with ESM’s decision to enter the highly competitive P2 class with HPD as our partner. Most importantly, we can’t wait for fan reaction when they see these impressive Patrón ESM race cars take to the track!”
American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón" :
Stage Set for More ALMS Success at Le Mans
BRASELTON, Ga. - For the last 14 years, teams from the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón have been a competitive force at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. This year will be no different as a collection of the ALMS’ best head for one of the most important races in all of motorsport.
The 90th anniversary of the French endurance classic is set for June 22-23. Corvette Racing, going for its eighth class victory at Le Mans, and SRT Motorsports, making its debut in the French classic, are part of the GTE Pro field.
MILES COLLIER NAMED RECIPIENT OF RRDC'S 2012 BOB AKIN AWARD
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 24, 2013) - Miles Collier, an artist, investor, philanthropist and noted authority on historic automobiles, was named the recipient of the 2012 Bob Akin Award by the Road Racing Drivers Club at a dinner prior to the running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the season opener of the 2013 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series.
Each recipient of this honor, considered the top award in motorsports for amateur, vintage/historic or semi-professional drivers, is selected by Akin's son Bobby, RRDC members Brian Redman and Archie Urciuoli, and approved by RRDC president Bobby Rahal.
The distinctive trophy was conceived by the RRDC in 2003 to honor the memory of longtime RRDC member and past president Bob Akin, who lost his life in a racing accident in 2002.
With much of the focus this week on the P1 and P2 championships in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón, Neel Jani stole the show Friday at Petit Le Mans. The Swiss driver took pole position for Rebellion Racing with a lap of 1:09.089 (132.351 mph) in his No. 12 Lola-Toyota coupe – the first honor in ALMS for the Swiss team.
Muscle Milk Pickett Racing returned to its winning ways Saturday in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón, the same day where three class driver championship battles ended at VIRginia International Raceway. It marked a magical day for the ALMS in its debut at VIR.
American Le Mans Series
Presented By Tequila Patrón
Announces 2013 Schedule
BRASELTON, Ga. (Oct. 18, 2012) - The 2013 American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón race schedule is a compelling, 10-round slate, featuring a unique joint weekend with the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series at Road America and what’s being termed a super endurance weekend in combination with the FIA World Endurance Championship at the spectacular new Circuit of The Americas (CoTA) in Texas. That event will feature separate, long distance races for the ALMS championship on Saturday, Sept. 21, and the WEC race on Sunday, Sept. 22.
Nine ALMS rounds in 2013 represent return visits to 2012 schedule sites. Eight of the Series’ race dates are Saturdays, punctuated by two consecutive, mid-season Sunday events – one of which is on a collective weekend with GRAND-AM at Road America. The CoTA event marks the ALMS’ first venture to the new 3.4-mile, 20-turn track near Austin, Texas.
“Our 2013 schedule reflects many of the traditional, world-class venues that have delivered so many great ALMS races over the years,” ALMS President and CEO Scott Atherton said. “We welcome the opportunity to join GRAND-AM with what will be a stellar sports car racing weekend at Road America, and we also look forward to visiting the stunning new CoTA track in Texas.”
Lucas Luhr set the fastest time in a topsy-turvy, two-hour night practice Thursday in the run-up to Saturday’s Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda. Luhr turned a lap of 1:11.545 (127.808 mph) in the final 25 minutes of the session driving the No. 6 Muscle Milk Pickett Racing Honda Performance Development ARX-03a prototype.
Muscle Milk Pickett Racing was on the offensive at Road Atlanta on Wednesday as it set the fastest time in testing ahead of the 15th Annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda. Saturday’s 1,000-mile/10-hour race will decide the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón’s P1 championship between Muscle Milk and Dyson Racing.
Super Weekends in ’13: ALMS with GRAND-AM
at Road America
Braselton, Ga. (Sept. 28, 2012) – The first pieces of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón’s 2013 schedule are coming into place. The ALMS joins the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series for a doubleheader race weekend at Road America in August. Plans also are under way to pair the ALMS alongside the FIA World Endurance Championship in September at the new Circuit of The Americas near Austin, Texas.
The ALMS’ complete 2013 race schedule will be announced in the near future.
Road America, in Elkhart Lake, Wis., will see the ALMS race Sunday, Aug. 11, with GRAND-AM competing the previous day. Although the recently merged ALMS and GRAND-AM organization will not compete as a unified series until the 2014 season, the 2013 shared weekend at Road America represents what ALMS President and CEO Scott Atherton called “an opportunity to create a truly special event where fans will experience the scope of North America’s premier sports car racing on two consecutive days at one iconic venue.”
INTERNATIONAL MOTOR RACING RESEARCH CENTER CELEBRATING 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF MUSTANG CONCEPT UNVEILING AT WATKINS GLEN BY OFFERING 2013 BOSS 302
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – The International Motor Racing Research Center at Watkins Glen is honoring the historic first public appearance of the Mustang brand 50 years ago at Watkins Glen by featuring a 2013 Boss 302 as its fund-raising raffle car.
Each year the Center staff selects a car emblematic of the Center’s mission to preserve and celebrate the history of motorsports. The car must also appeal to the Center’s supporters and the general public.
The staff could think of no better selection for the 2012 fund-raising effort than the iconic Mustang: 50 years ago, the Ford Motor Co. determined that race fans gathered at Watkins Glen for the 1962 U.S. Grand Prix would be the first to see the company’s newest concept car.
Nissan DeltaWing Returns to Racing at Petit Le Mans
BRASELTON, Ga. (Sept. 17, 2012) - It captured the world’s attention on its debut at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Now the Nissan DeltaWing is set to race in North America for the first time at the finale of the 2012 American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón.
The pioneering, dart-shaped Nissan DeltaWing will compete in the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda on Oct. 17-20 at Road Atlanta. The revolutionary race car was designed to perform like a contemporary sports prototype while cutting weight, fuel consumption and tire use by half. Monday’s announcement came at Nissan's North American headquarters in Nashville with Nissan Americas Vice-Chairman, Bill Krueger, on hand.
Nissan became a founding partner in the DeltaWing project in March, and the team then faced a major challenge to get the experimental Nissan DeltaWing car and its specially developed 1.6-litre DIG-T Nissan engine, ready for the grueling Le Mans 24 Hours.
BRASELTON, Ga. (Sept. 19, 2012) - In the wake of recent, ground-breaking news that the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón (ALMS) will merge with GRAND-AM Road Racing in 2014, the ALMS announced that its current class structure will go unchanged for the 2013 season. The Series' five categories continuing in 2013 are P1, P2, Prototype Challenge (PC), GT and GT Challenge (GTC).
With the merger of ALMS and GRAND-AM on the horizon, ALMS and its sanctioning body - the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) - chose to keep the classes as is, with a goal of minimizing costs for teams.
TRACK HISTORIAN TO DISCUSS ROAD AMERICA’S HISTORY
AT INTERNATIONAL MOTOR RACING RESEARCH CENTER ON OCT. 13
WATKINS GLEN, NY (Sept. 18, 2012) – Road America, described as one of the world’s most challenging road-racing courses, will be in the spotlight at the International Motor Racing Research Center’s final installment of its popular 2012 Center Conversations series “America’s Great Tracks” on Saturday, Oct. 13.
Tom Schultz, track historian at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin's Road America since 2000, will speak at 1 p.m. at the Center, located at 601 S. Decatur St., Watkins Glen, N.Y. The talk is free and open to all.
“Tom Schultz is uniquely qualified to tell the story of Road America and the three-year history of racing on public roads through and near the village of Elkhart Lake that preceded the construction of the permanent circuit,” said J.C. Argetsinger, president of the Racing Research Center. “Road America and Watkins Glen have a long history of friendship and cooperation as the two most distinguished and successful American road racing venues.”
LEXINGTON, OH - RIS - Muscle Milk Pickett Racing’s completed its drive for five Saturday with a victory in the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Challenge and sixth round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón. Klaus Graf and Lucas Luhr won at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the second year in a row and led for 108 of 123 laps in their No. 6 Honda Performance Development ARX-03a.
Muscle Milk Pickett Racing’s completed its drive for five Saturday with a victory in the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Challenge and sixth round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón. Klaus Graf and Lucas Luhr won at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the second year in a row and led for 108 of 123 laps in their No. 6 Honda Performance Development ARX-03a.
Home-track team, defending race winner start out front
The first battle of the Lime Rock Park weekend went to the home team. Guy Smith put Dyson Racing on pole position Friday for the American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix in an epic 15-minute session. Smith set a lap of 44.017 (120.553 mph) in Dyson Racing’s Mazda-powered Lola coupe that he drives with Chris Dyson.
Christophe Bouchut and Scott Tucker led a 1-2 finish for Level 5 Motorsports at the Baltimore Sports Car Challenge presented by SRT on Saturday, the team’s second overall win in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón this year. Bouchut, the P2 pole-sitter in the No. 055 Honda Performance Development ARX-03b prototype, beat Luis Diaz in the No. 95 entry by 2.158 seconds as the two P2 cars led the way in an wild race on the streets of Baltimore.
For Exclusive RIS Potos of the Grand Am at Indy Check Out:
Indianapolis - RIS - July 27, 2012 - The first Rolex Sports Car Series, appearance at the World’s Greatest Race Course was an absolute success. The fans at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway got a show that was truly worth the price of admission. We can said we had fire and we had rain. Lot of rain. The fire came in the form of great racing action as well as a blazing motorhome just outside of the oval turn one stands.
The Brickyard Grand Prix for Rolex DP and GT cars started in a heavy downpour that, while may have been unwelcome by racing drivers was celebrated by the parched Hoosiers around the state of Indiana.
Sebastien Bourdais in the Starworks Motorsports Ford/Riley won the inaugural Brickyard Grand Prix for the Rolex Series DP, Daytona Prototypes, and Grand Touring, GT cars. The #2 car completed a total of 91 laps in the three hour time limit. Several full course yellows along with a heavy downpour punctuated the race.
Klaus Graf went fastest again Friday at VIRginia International Raceway – this time in an official session for the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón. He set a lap of 1:36.586 (121.881 mph) in Muscle Milk Pickett Racing’s Honda Performance Development ARX-03a prototype in the morning’s opening practice for the VIR 240.
ALMS' Scott Atherton to Speak, Moderate Green Racing Panel
Braselton, Ga. (Sept. 11, 2012) – American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón President Scott Atherton will speak and moderate a green racing forum at the International Environmentally Friendly Vehicle Conference this week at the Baltimore Convention Center.
The fifth annual convention, which is being conducted in the U.S. for the first time, focuses upon the progress and future of greener and cleaner vehicles, large and small. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Environment Canada host this year’s event, which features direct involvement from nearly all of the major automobile manufacturers and leading suppliers. The American Le Mans Series is the only motorsports organization involved with the event.
Jeff Segal Seals Second GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series GT Championship with Runner-Up Finish in No. 69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD Ferrari 458 Italia Grand Am with Motorola at Laguna Seca
MONTEREY, Calif. (September 7, 2012) – Jeff Segal clinched the 2012 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series GT Championship with a second-place finish Sunday at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in the No. 69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD Ferrari 458 Italia Grand Am, earning his second GT title in the last three years with co-driver Emil Assentato.
The 2012 championship is the crowning moment of a successful season of competition for Segal, Assentato and AIM Autosport Team FXDD, and a triumphant return for Ferrari to the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series GT division. A class-leading three GT race wins and an unmatched record of no finish lower than eighth all year – including seven total podium results in 12 races – let Segal and his teammates seal the 2012 championship one race before the season-ending event at Lime Rock Park at the end of the month.
“It’s a fantastic feeling to have set a goal at the beginning of the season to have worked very systematically toward achieving that goal.” Segal said. “One race before the end of the season we accomplished what we set out to do, which was to win the championship with Ferrari in its return to the Rolex Series. There is still the manufacturers’ championship that we are fighting for at Lime Rock but a large part of the mission is accomplished.”
After narrowly missing out on victory two weeks ago in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón, Muscle Milk Pickett Racing’s Lucas Luhr took pole position for the Baltimore Sports Car Challenge presented by SRT on Friday. The German set a time of 1:25.174 (86.223 mph) in his No. 6 Honda Performance Development ARX-03a prototype.
BOURDAIS, POPOW TEAM TO WIN INAUGURAL BRICKYARD GRAND PRIX
Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge
INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
July 27, 2012
Indianapolis - RIS - July 27, 2012 - Qualifying for the Rolex Grand Am Sports Car Series at the World’s Greatest Race Course took place today in preparation for the first Brickyard Grand Prix.
Jon Fogarty in the Gainsco number 99, Corvette DP car, took the pole at 1:23.034 just 0.015 of a second faster than Max Angelelli in the number 10 SunTrust Corvette. Terry Borcheller rounded out the Corvette top three sweep in his number 5. Action Express Corvette DP at 1:23.050.
Rolex Qualifying ar the Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Forget the candles, the cake and the gifts. Klaus Graf threw himself a party Saturday with the best present of all – pole position for Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. On his 43rd birthday, Graf won his third straight pole position at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park with a blistering lap of 1:06.486 (133.147 mph) around the 2.459-mile, 10-turn circuit.
Birthday boy Klaus Graf set the fastest time in the first official practice for Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport on Saturday morning. The now 43-year-old Graf posted a lap of 1:07.404 (131.33 mph) around the 2.459-mile, 10-turn circuit at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park for Muscle Milk Pickett Racing.