Intersport Racing Finishes Second in Northeast Grand Prix Lakeville, Conn. -- Following its fine performance in the last round at Miller Motorsports Park, Intersport Racing recorded its second consecutive runner-up finish in class Saturday in...
Intersport Racing Finishes Second in Northeast Grand Prix
Lakeville, Conn. -- Following its fine performance in the last round at Miller Motorsports Park, Intersport Racing recorded its second consecutive runner-up finish in class Saturday in the Northeast Grand Prix. The small Dublin, Ohio-based team of father and son duo Jon and Clint Field and Richard Berry took the No. 37 Very Berry Exotics Lola B06/10 AER to a 10th place finish overall, maintaining its second place position in the LMP1 drivers' and teams' championship standings.
Once again, the team benefited from a wrecked Audi, this time the No. 1 car of Dindo Capello, who collided with a GT1 Aston Martin one hour into the two-hour and 45-minute race. While the factory German diesel was repaired, it rejoined over 15 laps down from Intersport's Lola. This left the team's Dunlop-shod entry an easy ride to the checkered flag, completing 154 laps.
"It wasn't bad," said team owner and driver, Clint, after the race. "We had to start from the back and dad made it all the way through traffic. We had just a bit of a problem with consistency in the tire. The track was dirty and people went off flying. But we put in a good, safe run and we finished it."
The newly reconfigured 10-turn, 1.51-mile Lime Rock Park "Optional" circuit proved to be a challenge for many teams throughout the weekend. A number of cars suffered accidents during Friday's practice sessions. Intersport's Lola stayed out of trouble on-track but faced engine-related problems prior to qualifying, forcing the team to change the twin-turbo AER powerplant before race day. Jon thus started from the rear of the field because the car did not set a qualifying time.
"It was tough starting from the back, but I made some good progress early on," Jon said. "The Very Berry Exotics car was quick, but it was a battle on the track with the slippery surface. We knew traffic was going to play a factor, and we were lucky not to get caught up in other people's incidents. Overall, it was a good run for the whole team."
On lap 45, Jon handed the car over to son, Clint, with the team electing to bring the Lola AER in for two splash-and-goes for fuel while under a 20-minute plus yellow flag period. The Cellulosic E85-powered machine motored its way through traffic before pitting for the final time with 37 minutes remaining. Berry jumped behind the wheel and completed the race.
"The car was a handful to drive at the end, but we scored a great result," Berry said. "Finishing second again gives a big boost to the entire team, especially with what is on the horizon next week at our home track."
At Mid-Ohio next weekend, Intersport will debut its second Lola AER for drivers Ryan Lewis and John Faulkner. The No. 30 car will run in near identical specification to the team's No. 37 entry, both of which are ex-Dyson Racing machines. The Lewis/Faulkner combination will benefit from the Cellulosic E85 fuel, with Field/Field/Berry trio using the E10 gasoline blend for the first time this season. With back-to-back solid finishes on two very different types of circuits, the future looks very bright for the ever-expanding team.
"That's two seconds in a row, which is really good for our little team," Clint added. "We may not always be the fastest, but I think today we closed the gap compared to where we were. We had pretty quick times and consistency towards the middle and end of the race. It was good. The second car is just going to bring more competitiveness to the team. We're looking forward to putting Ryan and John in the car at Mid-Ohio and carry some momentum for the rest of the season."
There is little time to rest. The next round of the American Le Mans Series is the Acura Sports Car Challenge, scheduled for 2:10 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 19 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. NBC Sports will televise the race from noon to 2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 20. XM Satellite Radio will air the race from 5 to 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 20. American Le Mans Radio will have live coverage on americanlemans.com, which also will feature IMSA's Live Timing & Scoring.