Extreme Speed Motorsports Long Beach race report

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Extreme Speed Motorsports

PODIUM FINISH FOR EXTREME SPEED MOTORSPORTS IN LONG BEACH

LONG BEACH, CA – April 14, 2012 – Extreme Speed Motorsports scored its first podium result of the season as Scott Sharp and Johannes van Overbeek made a barnstorming charge from ninth on the grid to score a third place finish at the Tequila Patrón American Le Mans Series race on the streets of Long Beach.

#01 Extreme Speed Motorsports Ferrari F458 Italia: Scott Sharp, Johannes van Overbeek
#01 Extreme Speed Motorsports Ferrari F458 Italia: Scott Sharp, Johannes van Overbeek

Photo by: Bob Heathcote

After minimal practice and a cancelled qualifying session on Friday, the Extreme Speed Motorsports team reviewed data and prepared a pair of Tequila Patrón Ferrari Italia 458s for the 11-turn temporary street circuit known as the Grand Prix of Long Beach.

This marks the third career podium for the Extreme Speed Motorsports team and first of the 2012 season. In addition, the No. 01 Tequila Patrón Ferrari received the Michelin Green X Challenge Award for being the most fuel efficient race car in the GT class.

With qualifying canceled on Friday, the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) officials ruled that the teams would grid based on points. As the first driver in the 01 Ferrari, van Overbeek charged to the front of the field and was the race leader less than 40 minutes into the two-hour race.

At the halfway mark of the event, van Overbeek pitted with the GT field and the ESM crew went to work on a full pit stop including driver change. Sharp climbed aboard the Tequila Patrón-sponsored machine to complete the race. As a result of track position and racing behind a few slower cars on track, the No. 01 fell to fourth. Sharp worked his way into the third position after passing a Corvette in the closing five minutes of the race.

On the other side of the ESM pit, the No. 02 Tequila Patrón started the race with Ed Brown as the first driver. While on the first lap of the race, Brown spun in turn five and lost some valuable track position. Working to regain position and get into a rhythm, Brown was hit by a prototype race car, which caused the 02 machine to lose a little more track position.

At the midway point of the race for the 02 Ferrari, Guy Cosmo climbed aboard and worked his way to a 10th place finish in the GT class.

Next on the schedule for the Extreme Speed Motorsports is the American Le Mans Monterey Presented by Patrón at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on May 10-12, 2012.

Scott Sharp

“What a great job by everyone on the ESM Tequila Patrón team. Going into this race was going to be a real preparation and engineering exercise today because no one had a chance to get many laps yesterday. Whoever rolled off the truck closer was really going to be the guy that could go the fastest. I think our guys did a great job. I think we had one of the fastest cars, if not the fastest car. Johannes did an incredible job; nothing was given to him, he clawed his way to the front. We had a really strong Tequila Patrón Ferrari during both our stints today.

“At the midway point we came out second and just got stuck behind a couple of really slow LMPC cars, and got freight trained by so many people and was in fourth. I lost valuable time and I had to use the car up to get closer to the race leaders. I had a great battle with Jan Magnussen and passed him. We were fast, but it just wasn’t quite our day. We were very close and we’re knocking hard on the door.”

“We’re glad to be here on the podium in Long Beach. Thanks to Tequila Patrón for their great sponsorship of the ESM team, the Long Beach race and the ALMS series. It was a terrific weekend for our sponsor.”

Johannes van Overbeek

“Long Beach was good today. Our Tequila Patrón Ferrari was great. Hats off to the ESM Patrón guys, they did a great job guessing what the set-up was going to be and they just about nailed it. We had one of the quickest cars on average in the race. I’m sure if it was a normal two-hour and 45 minute race, Scott and I would have won. But it wasn’t and we finished third. It’s a great podium this early in the year, first of the year and first of many to come.

“We’re definitely moving in the right direction. All the hard work the team has been doing on pit stops, strategy, part development, it is showing. I’m really proud to be a part of this team and I can’t wait for more.”

Ferrari fans, check out our new sister site FerrariCircuit.com

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Series ALMS
Tags esm, ferrari, sharp.vanoverbeek

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