Fast forward Orbit Racing is gearing for high speed at Mosport International Raceway, site of the next American Le Mans Series race. The Florida team will field the No. 43 YES Network Porsche 911 GT3 RS for Peter Baron of Deerfield Beach, Fla.,...
Orbit Racing is gearing for high speed at Mosport International Raceway, site of the next American Le Mans Series race. The Florida team will field the No. 43 YES Network Porsche 911 GT3 RS for Peter Baron of Deerfield Beach, Fla., and Marc Lieb of Niefern, Germany. The race is set for Aug. 17 on the 2.459-mile road course in Bowmanville, Ont.
Baron and New York racer Leo Hindery drove the No. 43 Porsche to second in the GT class at Mosport last year. Baron says technical ability and engineering are the keys to success on the fast track.
"Mosport is a track that separates technical ability from bravery," he said. "It's like my home track, Road America [Elkhart Lake, Wis.], with a lot of high-speed turns. Marc's favorite track is Spa [-Francorchamps, in Belgium], which also has a lot of high-speed turns, so Mosport should gel well for us. Setup-wise, one of the strong points of our car this year has been middle-speed and high-speed turns, so we should have a real good car right when we show up, and hopefully by the end of the weekend, we'll have a great car for the race."
Lieb will see the Mosport track for the first time this week, but it should suit his driving style.
"I always prefer tracks which are fast - you can gain more in faster corners compared to another driver," he explained. "First time, everybody tells you the corner is flat, so you go into the corner and the first time you brake, you say, 'No way this corner is flat, no way'. Then maybe you lift [off the accelerator] on the second lap and the third lap you just lift a little bit, then the fourth or fifth time, you lift at the last moment. You have to force yourself, it's a big challenge. But when you get it, it's great. You're going, 'WOO! That was cool!'"
Set for speed
Tim Munday, technical director for Orbit Racing, says the key to maximizing performance on a high-speed track is setting the car for driver confidence.
"It's a very fast right-left change of direction, so getting the car to be comfortable for the driver is important. The speed naturally comes from there," he said. "You have to get the car to the point where he knows the car will do what he wants it to do when he wants it to do it; rather than the car leading him, he can dictate what the car's doing. You can have a car that's quick, but it's such hard work for the driver that they never want to push it to the edge because the limit is very small. You need something that gives the driver confidence."