(Greenville, S.C.) - Having already won major sportscar endurance races in four countries on two continents in 2000, Michelin will be trying to add to its winning ways at Mosport Park in Bowmanville, Ont., Canada, on Aug. 5. The event will be the only Canadian stop on the 2000 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) tour.
Earlier this year, Michelin won the 24 Hours of Daytona (Daytona Beach, Fla.) with Dodge Viper, the 12 Hours of Sebring (Sebring, Fla.) with Audi, the 24 Hours of Le Mans (Le Mans, France) with Audi, the Silverstone 500 USA Challenge (Northamptonshire, England) with BMW, the Nürburgring 1000k (Nurburg, Germany) with Panoz as well as ALMS events in Charlotte, N.C. and Sonoma, Calif.
"Michelin is a global company...we sell tires all over the world," said Herb Johnson, director of motorsports, Michelin North America. "One of the reasons that we like sportscar racing is that it allows us the opportunity to showcase our technology head-to-head with our competitors on a worldwide basis. So, we are looking forward to racing in Canada. And the good news is that we have a pretty good win streak going right now that we intend to extend at Mosport."
Michelin has won every ALMS event dating back to the Mosport event last season. In fact, Michelin won all three categories at Mosport last season. Panoz teammates Johnny O'Connell and Jan Magnussen captured the overall event in their Michelin-shod Panoz LMP-1 Roadster S. Olivier Beretta and David Donohue won the GTS category in a Dodge Viper fitted with Michelins while Dirk Müller and Cort Wagner scored the GT victory in a Michelin-shod Porsche.
"Mosport has a lot of history and is very challenging," continued Johnson. "The track has many different surfaces and is very coarse...that is a tough combination that can easily cause excessive tire wear. So, our engineers will have their work cut out for them. We did win at Mosport last year so we have a pretty good base from which to work."
In the prototype category at Mosport, the Sebring and Le Mans-winning Audi team will be riding on Michelin tires, as will the 1999 Le Mans-winning BMW, Panoz, Olive Garden Rafanelli and Champion teams.
Team Oreca will field a pair of Michelin-shod Dodge Vipers, which not only scored its third consecutive Le Mans GTS victory in June but also won the 24 Hours of Daytona outright in February and the 12 Hours of Sebring GTS category in March.
Alex Job Racing, Dick Barbour Racing and Mike Colucci Racing will field Porsches fitted with Michelin tires in the GT category. The Barbour team has won every GT category ALMS event on Michelin tires this season.
Michelin manufactures and sells tires for every type of vehicle, including airplanes, automobiles, bicycles, earthmovers, farm equipment, heavy duty trucks, motorcycles and the space shuttle. The company also publishes travel guides, maps and atlases covering Europe, Asia, Africa and North America. Headquartered in Greenville, S.C., Michelin North America (www.michelin.com) employs 27,000 and operates 23 plants in 21 locations.