Tough Luck Crosses The Border For Intersport Racing Struggles continue at Mosport Detroit -- As the 2007 American Le Mans Series Championship hits the home stretch, it appears that even a change in tires can't change Intersport Racing's tough ...
Tough Luck Crosses The Border For Intersport Racing
Struggles continue at Mosport
Detroit -- As the 2007 American Le Mans Series Championship hits the home stretch, it appears that even a change in tires can't change Intersport Racing's tough luck, Following an announcement that Intersport Racing and Kumho Tires had suspended their LMP1 tire development program the team is using Dunlop tires for the rest of the season.
But the #37 Very Berry Exotics, Judd Powered Creation's problem was not tires at the Grand Prix of Mosport. While enjoying a solid performance, a rear shaft gave way in the latter stages of the 2 hour and 45 minute race.
"We're pretty frustrated," commented crew chief, Brian Alder. "These mechanical failures rob us of the opportunity to work on positive changes to the car. We're chasing reliability issues when we should be focused on performance issues. The change to Dunlop tires was the right choice, after all, they have some history with this chassis. They supply the European Creation cars in the LMS and have had fairly good success. We had to do some fabricating to grow the rear wheel openings, but so far, the change appears to have us heading in the right direction. So, I think it's a good change. Though that's not to say we're not still searching for the right combination. We're determined to move this program further up the grid."
Intersport had been running Kumho's new LMP1 tire for the past eight races on the team's Judd-powered Creation CA06-H. The team achieved five consecutive LMP1 podium finishes with the tires.
Compounding Alder's workload is the daunting situation of this month's back-to-back races as the team will move directly from Mosport International in Bowmanville, Ontario to Belle Isle in Detroit.
"We won't have time to return to our home base in Dublin, Ohio," noted Alder. "We'll have to make repairs and go through the car once we arrive at Belle Isle. I'm fortunate to have a great crew working with me... they don't quit. And, since Detroit is a new circuit for all the teams, it will level the playing field a little bit."
Clint Field spoke about the challenges the team faces over the final three events.
"We've got our work cut out for us," said Clint. "We still have hopes for that third spot in the LMP1 championship. We never had any fantasy of catching the Audis, but we do feel we're the rightful owners of the top spot in the non-diesel segment of the class. Right now, we're focused on getting on the podium in Detroit and then heading home. Once back at the shop, we'll sit down as a team and review all of our options. The break between Detroit and Petit Le Mans will give us the necessary time to go over everything and make some decisions. Obviously, these recent reliability issues will be magnified in a 10 hour race like Peitit. We need to get it right."