MICHELIN® GREEN X® CHALLENGE PREPARES TO CROWN FIRST SEASON CHAMPIONS
MONTEREY, CALIF. (October 7, 2009) - The MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge prepares to crown its first season champions as the American Le Mans Series heads into the tenth and final race of the 2009 season at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, October 10th.
Through the course of the year, the ALMS manufacturers and teams have competed in events ranging from 100 minutes to 12 hours on a wide range of circuits and in varied temperatures, elevations, and weather conditions.
A "race within the race" at every ALMS event, the MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge recognizes performance, energy efficiency and reduced environmental impact under a formula developed by the Argonne National Labs in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agency.
"It is very exciting to have the MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge championships going right down to the final race," said Silvia Mammone, Michelin Motorsports manager. "The competition has grown as the season has progressed and we expect a terrific race here in Monterey to determine the first champions."
Acura and Porsche have clinched the respective Prototype and GT category MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge manufacturer titles; however, the team and driver championships are very much in play at the hilly, 2.238-mile circuit near Monterey, Calif.
Heading into the finale, the Lowe's Fernandez Acura of LMP2 championship winning Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz holds a narrow lead over the LMP1 championship leading Patron Highcroft Acura of David Brabham and Scott Sharp.
The Fernandez Acura earned the MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge prototype honors at St. Petersburg and Road America, while the Patron Highcroft squad claimed the award at Mosport. The third Acura of de Ferran Motorsports stands third as a pair of DNFs off-set their four wins. The GTL low sulfur diesel fueled Audi R15 TDi also claimed a pair of wins in its two ALMS starts, the Twelve Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans.
In the GT category, all three full season Porsche 911 GT3 RSR entries have claimed the MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge honors at least once.
The #45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche of GT2 championship leaders Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long have a pair of wins (Long Beach and Lime Rock Park), while teammates Seth Neiman, Darren Law and Johannes van Overbeek in the #44 took the honor at the recent Petit Le Mans after switching from E10 to E85R fuel. The two cars are currently separated by just 14 points in the season long MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge championship. The Farnbacher Loles Porsche has parlayed its award at Salt Lake City into a strong third spot in the standings heading into the season finale.
Despite a limited schedule, Corvette Racing's two cars have also claimed four wins (Twelve Hours of Sebring, Mid-Ohio, Road America, Mosport) and currently stand in fourth and fifth place.
ABOUT THE MICHELIN® GREEN X® CHALLENGE The MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge, developed in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and SAE International is a race within the race at all 2009 American Le Mans Series events.
All ALMS entries compete with E10 ethanol blended gasoline; E85R gasoline blended ethanol, GTL (natural gas to liquid) biodiesel or E10-electric hybrid power.
Teams win by delivering the best overall performance, fuel efficiency, and smallest environmental impact throughout the race. Using a formula developed by the Argonne National Labs that includes over 30 different factors, real time standings are posted on timing and scoring screens throughout the race. The American Le Mans Series is the only series currently recognized as "Green Racing" by the U. S. Department of Energy; Environmental Protection Agency and SAE International.
The MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge trophies are presented to the respective Prototype and GT winners. The bases for the unique MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge trophies are made of rubber recycled from MICHELIN® GREEN X® labeled consumer tires.