LIZARDS CLOSING IN ON ANOTHER GT2 CHAMPIONSHIP After coming so close to a championship in its four years in the American Le Mans Series, Flying Lizard Motorsports is knocking on the door of a second consecutive GT2 crown entering this weekend's...
LIZARDS CLOSING IN ON ANOTHER GT2 CHAMPIONSHIP
After coming so close to a championship in its four years in the American Le Mans Series, Flying Lizard Motorsports is knocking on the door of a second consecutive GT2 crown entering this weekend's Monterey Sports Car Championships presented by Patron. As it has all season, the Sonoma, Calif.- based team is entering a pair of Porsche 911 GT3 RSRs for their home race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
Class championship leaders Jorg Bergmeister and Patrick Long have five victories to their credit this season (all consecutively from St. Petersburg to Mid-Ohio) and hold an 18-point lead in the driver title race with the Lizards holding the same margin in the team standings over Risi Competizione. Ninth-place points will be good enough for both crowns regardless of the finishing position of Jaime Melo and Pierre Kaffer in the Risi Ferrari F430 GT.
The Flying Lizard squad also can score valuable points should Long and Bergmeister falter; Johannes van Overbeek and Seth Neiman will drive the second Lizard Porsche.
"The championship has been a moving target for us this year," said team chief strategist Thomas Blam. "We had a very strong first half of the season and built a good points margin, but we've seen that lead erode over the last several races. The pressure is on: in a four-hour race at a track like Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, a lot can happen. We have to stay focused on putting together a strong car and finishing; we don't want to take any chances with traffic. We've been fast at Laguna in the past and had fast cars at Petit Le Mans in both the wet and the dry, so we expect that we'll be on the pace on Saturday."
99 AND COUNTING
A victory for the Lizards, fellow Porsche GT2 team Farnbacher Loles Racing or Team Cytosport with its Porsche RS Spyder in LMP2 will give the German marque 100 all-time Series victories, the first for any manufacturer.
The numbers tell an impressive story of Porsche's success over the years...
* Since the first American Le Mans Series race in 1999, Porsche has recorded 24 victories in LMP2, two in GTS and 73 in GT2. Ten different entrants have won Series races for Porsche.
* Thirty-six drivers have won races in a Porsche.
* Porsche has won 12 manufacturer championships: one in GTS, three in LMP2 and eight in GT2/GT.
* Nine drivers have class championships for Porsche.
* It has put together streaks of at least five consecutive victories on seven different occasions.
* Porsche also has 93 pole positions - 68 in GT2/GT, one in GTS and 24 in LMP2.
The final race in the 2009 American Le Mans Series is the four-hour Monterey Sports Car Championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif. The green flag is scheduled for 2:45 p.m. PT on Saturday, October 10. The race will air on SPEED from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 11. Live coverage will be available via American Le Mans Radio presented by Porsche via americanlemans.com, which also will feature Living Timing & Scoring on Racehub. Live coverage also can be heard on Sirius 126 and XM 242. You can follow the Series on Twitter (almsnotes) and on our Facebook page.
The race will also mark the 10th and final round of the 2009 MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge. Tickets are available at americanlemans.com and mazdaraceway.com.