For the second race in a row this season Marino was denied the opportunity to get into the cockpit of his race car. After the extreme disappointment just five weeks ago of not driving the DeltaWing during the race at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, a similar avoidable incident occurred here in Mosport today.
The #52 PR1 Motorsports LMPC Oreca had made a great start to the race in the hands of Marino’s do-driver, Californian Ken Dobson. Starting sixth in LMPC category he had moved into second place by the end of the first 30 minutes, then on lap 28 as Ken drew close to the back of the lead LMPC car, an opportunity presented itself to overtake by moving around the outside of a GTC Porsche Cup car that became sandwiched between the pair of them. Alex Popow, who was leading the LMPC category, found himself caught on the inside of the same Porsche and not wanting to give up his class lead to Ken, Popow held the inside line, but in attempting the pass on the Porsche he clipped its rear turning it directly into Ken’s path. The incident happened at the exit of the very fast Turn 2 going into Turn 3 which meant the momentum of the hit sent the #52 car speeding into the tyre wall. Ken suffered severe bruising and concussion, but the #52 car was damaged beyond repair. Alex Popow received a race penalty, but the penalty for the PR1 Motorsports team could well be the loss of a race chassis.
Marino was very disappointed, but accepted it as a very tough racing incident. “In fact the whole weekend was a tough one” said Marino. “With so little adjustment available in the LMPC category, getting a good set-up on the #52 car was a real challenge, but the PR1 Motorsports team were great, even making further changes after qualifying. They would appear to have paid off too judging by Ken’s pace at the race start, it was just disappointing I didn’t get a chance to find out, but I’m glad Ken’s OK although the car would appear to be a right-off! Hopefully I will be luckier third time around”.
Source: Marino Franchitti media