Mosport: Friday practice preview

American Le Mans Series Teams ready to tackle Mosport; practice begins Friday for Sunday's race. BOWMANVILLE, Ont., Canada (August 15, 2002) -- American Le Mans Series racing teams will get their first practice runs at Mosport ...

American Le Mans Series Teams ready to tackle Mosport; practice begins Friday for Sunday's race.

BOWMANVILLE, Ont., Canada (August 15, 2002) -- American Le Mans Series racing teams will get their first practice runs at Mosport International Raceway Friday in preparation for Sunday's mail2web.com Grand Prix of Mosport.

Two hours of track time on Friday will help the teams tune their cars for Saturday's qualifying sessions that will set the starting order for the two-hour, 45-minute sports car endurance race that will begin at 1 p.m. (EDT) Sunday.

Located just east of Toronto, Mosport has been a fixture on the American Le Mans Series schedule since the series was formed in 1999. The 2.459-mile, 10-turn circuit is one of the fastest and most challenging that the series visits.

"Mosport has a little of everything," said Tom Kristensen of Denmark, the series point leader in the LMP 900 class and co-winner of the most recent race two weeks ago at Trois-Rivieres, Qc. "Fast turns, slow turns, elevation changes, fast straights. It's challenging and fun to drive."

In last year's event at Mosport, Kristensen and co-driver Rinaldo Capello of Italy had a bad day as their Audi R8 was damaged in two separate crashes. "We are looking forward to having a chance to do better this year," said Kristensen, who has joined with Capello for two wins this season.

Audi factory drivers Emanuele Pirro and Frank Biela won last year's ALMS event at Mosport. The two will also be in the field for Sunday's race, looking for their second win of the season. Panoz LMP-1 drivers David Brabham and Jan Magnussen will seek their third win of 2002.

Four classes of American Le Mans Series cars will compete in the event. In addition to the LMP 900 (Prototype) machines, the LMP 675 class for smaller Prototypes will battle along with the production-based GTS and GT classes. All cars will race for class wins as well as the overall victory.

Ron Fellows and Johnny O'Connell, drivers for Corvette Racing in a Chevrolet Corvette C5-R, will defend their GTS class win from last year. Fellows, who lives in nearby Mississauga, Ont., will no doubt have the largest cheering section in the large crowd expected for the event. The two have won class honors in four of the six ALMS races held this season, with Corvette teammates Kelly Collins and Andy Pilgrim winning the other two.

Alex Job Racing drivers Lucas Luhr and Sascha Maassen have won the GT class four times this season in their Porsche 911 GT3 RS. The LMP 675 class has seen three teams win two times each. Archangel Motorsports, Intersport Racing and Team Bucknum Racing will all compete at Mosport.

Sunday's race will be televised live by NBC Sports beginning at 2 p.m. (EDT). Live coverage by the American Le Mans Series Radio Web can be heard online at www.americanlemans.com. The Radio Web will also have live coverage of qualifying beginning at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

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Series ALMS
Drivers Rinaldo Capello , Tom Kristensen , Jan Magnussen , Frank Biela , Ron Fellows , Johnny O'Connell , Andy Pilgrim , Sascha Maassen , Kelly Collins , Lucas Luhr , Alex Job , Emanuele Pirro
Teams Corvette Racing , Alex Job Racing