MOWLEM, CORSA TAKE FOURTH IN CLASS AT MID OHIO MANSFIELD, Ohio (Aug. 9 2009) -- The progress continued for Johnny Mowlem and his Corsa Motorsports teammates as they make developmental strides on their hybrid-powered Ginetta-Zytek...
MOWLEM, CORSA TAKE FOURTH IN CLASS AT MID OHIO
MANSFIELD, Ohio (Aug. 9 2009) -- The progress continued for Johnny Mowlem and his Corsa Motorsports teammates as they make developmental strides on their hybrid-powered Ginetta-Zytek 09HS in American Le Mans Series competition.
Mowlem and co-driver Stefan Johansson finished fourth in the P1 class for the fastest cars and sixth overall in the two-hour, 45-minute race at Mid Ohio Sports Car Course here. It was the second consecutive strong finish for the duo but the weekend was not without it's problems. For the first time there were some reliability issues with the hybrid electric motor, causing the team to have to miss the practice session prior to qualifying and also qualifying itself.
"Problems like this are to be totally expected with a development program like this one" stated Mowlem "I was just thinking this morning that we must be due an issue of some sort soon, as up until now the hybrid system has been phenomenally reliable. The issues that we have had have all been related to finding extra performance with the system itself and also finding ways to improve the basic handling of the car, given some significant differences in handling created by the integration of all the various hybrid systems."
Nevertheless, the Corsa team along with the on site Zytek personnel, did a fine job getting the car re-fettled for the race, good enough for Mowlem to set the fastest time overall in a wet and slippery final practice session, the first time ever that a Hybrid vehicle has topped the time sheets in an official Le Mans series session.
"We've had two races on circuits where the driving was very technical in nature," Mowlem said. "We've got feedback from the car under those conditions. Our next race is at Road America, which is a faster circuit and will need a different type of set-up and also application of the hybrid technology, so it will be a useful exercise in the continued development of the system." The P-1 class is for the fastest prototype racecars in ALMS competition and includes cars and teams with much of the development work already complete. Throw in some of the best drivers in the world, including Johansson and Mowlem, and the strength of competition becomes obvious.
"Our car is revolutionary in concept," Mowlem said. "It's never easy developing any program in the public eye, especially one as technically advanced as this one, but full credit should go to the Corsa Motorsport for taking on the challenge. We're out here fighting and both Stefan and I will carry on giving our all to achieve the best result possible with whatever package we have at our disposal."
The Road America race will be shown live on the Speed TV channel at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 16. The Road America venue is 4-miles long and includes 14-turns and is located near Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.