Muscle Milk Team CytoSport Scores Second Row Starting Position at Long Beach Porsche RS Spyder at Long Beach Long Beach, CA (April 16, 2010) - Muscle Milk Team CytoSport didn't quite know what to expect heading into today's qualifying session...
Muscle Milk Team CytoSport Scores Second Row Starting Position at Long Beach
Porsche RS Spyder at Long Beach Long Beach, CA (April 16, 2010) - Muscle Milk Team CytoSport didn't quite know what to expect heading into today's qualifying session for the Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach, but the team came out satisfied with a fourth place on the starting grid for Saturday's race.
With Long Beach being the first event of the season where the LMP1 and LMP2 cars are running in the new combined LMP class, Muscle Milk Team CytoSport wasn't certain how they would stack up to the competition with the new equivalency rules in place.
While the morning practice times were not indicative of where the team sits amongst its competitors - largely due to many red flags hindering the session - this afternoon's American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron qualifying session may have given a clearer picture.
Muscle Milk's Klaus Graf was behind the wheel of the Michelin shod Porsche RS Spyder for qualifying. After five laps he was sitting in fourth place with a lap time of one minute 15.383 seconds and was putting in an even quicker lap when a red flag came out for debris on the track, forcing the German to abandon and return to pit lane.
Klaus Graf Fortunately for the Benicia, California-based team, the clean up was a quick one and the track went back to green with a little less than eight minutes to go. Graf headed back out after a quick change to the car and kept improving his time lap after lap.
His final and quickest lap time around the 1.968-mile street course was one minute 14.259 seconds, which upon crossing the timing line was equal to the third place car of Dyson Racing. However the Dyson car still had to complete its final lap and improved his time by only seven hundredths of a second.
The one hour and 40 minute Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach race will see the green flag at 4:40 p.m. PT on Saturday, April 17, 2010. Round 2 of the 2010 American Le Mans Series will be broadcast on same day tape delay starting at 8:00 p.m. ET. Live radio coverage will be available on American Le Mans Radio presented by Porsche as well as Sirius Channel 127 and XM Channel 245.
What they have to say:
Greg Pickett, Owner / Driver #6 Muscle Milk Porsche RS
Spyder "It felt good getting back in the car here at Long Beach. I always enjoy it. There's always great weather down here and great fans. It's a challenging place around here, it's not easy with these cars in the confines of these walls. It takes a lot of commitment, no question about it.
(About Graf's qualifying performance) We were very happy. It was very, very close with the Dyson car who can crank that thing up, so for us to be within a few hundredths I'm very, very proud of the team. Klaus really did a great job and so did everyone on the team. When I look under Klaus' visor, when he comes in and he has a big smile on his face, that's what matters because that's really what this is all about. He did Muscle Milk and everyone proud."
Klaus Graf, Driver #6 Muscle Milk Porsche RS Spyder
"It was good, I had a lot of fun I have to say. Every lap I was going faster and faster. I kept pushing and pushing. I was maybe a little bit conservative under braking, it's so easy to make mistakes here in some of the bumpy braking areas. I was pushing really, really hard and the Muscle Milk Porsche RS Spyder was really good as were our Michelin tires, so hats off to the guys and everyone on the team. It was a difficult session with the red flag in between with debris on the track but it was a good day for the team. We made the right changes and I think we have a very good race car for tomorrow."
Geoffrey Carter, Team Manager, #6 Muscle Milk Porsche RS Spyder
"We were a little apprehensive coming in because of the rules change, the equalization formula. We didn't know what to expect. After this morning's practice which was pretty limited running because of red flags, we thought we had a bigger disparity from the former P1 cars to the P2 than we actually had by the end of the qualifying today. "There's a couple of the cars that are clearly quicker than the former P2 cars but Klaus did a very good job in qualifying, we had a red flag that cut our first stint short but we went back out for a second try and the Porsche RS Spyder came to life after that last change we made. "We're happy with where we qualified, the guys did a great job and we're looking forward to the race tomorrow to see what we can get out of Long Beach."