NBC SPORTS BRINGS EUROPEAN EVENT TO AMERICAN RACE FANS INDIANAPOLIS (April 9, 2001) -- Although the American Le Mans Series won't race in America again until July, fans of the sports car racing series won't have to wait that long to see their...
NBC SPORTS BRINGS EUROPEAN EVENT TO AMERICAN RACE FANS
INDIANAPOLIS (April 9, 2001) -- Although the American Le Mans Series won't race in America again until July, fans of the sports car racing series won't have to wait that long to see their favorites in action, thanks to television.
NBC Sports will televise the Saturday, April 14, inaugural race for the European Le Mans Series from England's Donington Park circuit. The telecast will provide the opportunity for race fans in the United States to see many of the drivers and teams from the American series in competition on the challenging 2.5-mile circuit.
The same-day coverage of the event will be NBC Sports' first telecast of a Le Mans Series race from Europe. The network has televised numerous American Le Mans Series events in the past two seasons, attracting audiences and telecast ratings that were equal to and in some cases larger than those generated by some of the more established racing series in North America.
Allen Bestwick, anchor for NBC Sports' NASCAR racing coverage, will be the host for the network's telecast of the Donington Park event, joined in the booth for analysis by longtime road racing star Bill Adam. Calvin Fish and Martin Havens will be pit reporters. Coverage of the event will air at 4 p.m. (EDT) in the United States.
The Donington Park event for the European Le Mans Series has attracted entries from many of the teams that regularly compete in American Le Mans Series races. Among those in the 30-car field will be the two-car Audi Sport North America team, winner of the first two American Le Mans Series races of the season, with drivers Frank Biela, Rinaldo Capello, Tom Kristensen and Emanuele Pirro.
Also entered is the USA-based, two-car Panoz team, with drivers David Brabham, Klaus Graf, Jan Magnussen and Gualter Salles, and the BMW Motorsports Team with drivers JJ Lehto, Dirk and Jorg Muller and Fredrik Ekblom.
The Konrad Motorsports team will compete in the GTS class with the fast Saleen S7R that scored an upset victory in the recent 12 Hours At Sebring, with American Terry Borcheller expected to wheel the car along with England's Oliver Gavin.
Two other top American-based teams are also entered, including the Alex Job Racing/McKenna Porsche team with drivers Lucas Luhr, Sascha Maassen, Christian Menzel and American Randy Pobst, and the Dick Barbour Racing team with its new LMP 675 class machines to be driven by Didier de Radigues, John Graham, Eric van de Poele and female racer Milka Duno.
The race will also mark the competition debut of the long-awaited Chrysler Prototype, fielded by Team ORECA. The car will be driven by Olivier Beretta, the GTS-class champion of the ALMS the past two years, and endurance racing star Yannick Dalmas. Other European-based teams, many of which compete in ALMS races, will also compete.
Practice and qualifying for the Donington event will be held on Friday. Live qualifying and race coverage by the Radio Le Mans Web can be heard online at www.americanlemans.com.
The next American Le Mans Series race will be at California's Sears Point Raceway on July 22.