JULY 12, 2002 AMERICAN LE MANS SERIES NOTES OF INTEREST ** WASHINGTON RACE TO BE FIRST ON NBC -- The July 21 Cadillac Grand Prix of Washington, D.C., will mark the first appearance of the American Le Mans Series on NBC Sports in 2002. NBC...
JULY 12, 2002
AMERICAN LE MANS SERIES NOTES OF INTEREST
** WASHINGTON RACE TO BE FIRST ON NBC -- The July 21 Cadillac Grand Prix of Washington, D.C., will mark the first appearance of the American Le Mans Series on NBC Sports in 2002. NBC Sports has televised selected series events each year since the series started in 1999.
Rick Benjamin will anchor the broadcast, joined in the booth by Bill Adam for analysis. Jon Beekhuis and Martin Haven will report the action from the pits. The telecast starts at 1 p.m. (EDT).
The Washington race will be the first of three appearances for the series on NBC Sports in 2002. The network will also televise the event from Canada's Mosport International Raceway on August 18 and the event from Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on Sept. 22.
** BMWs RETURN TO ALMS RACING AT WASHINGTON -- For American Le Mans Series fans who have been missing BMWs in action this season, a pair of cars will be in competition in the Cadillac Grand Prix of Washington, D.C.
Florida-based Alegra Motorsports has entered two BMW M3 machines in the GT class for the race. The cars will be the first BMWs to compete in the ALMS this season.
Carlos de Quesada of Miami and Scooter Gabel of Tampa will co-drive the #40 car, while the team #41 will be co-driven by Emil Assentato of Locust Valley, N.Y., and Chris Gleason of Johnstown, Penn.
The team has also entered both cars in the next round of the ALMS after Washington, Le Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres on Aug. 3.
** CAPELLO KEEPS ADDING TO RECORD -- Rinaldo "Dindo" Capello, who co-drove to victory in last week's American Le Mans Series race at Road America with Tom Kristensen, continues to add to his record as the most-winning driver in the LMP 900 class in the history of the American Le Mans Series
Capello's win at Road America was his 11th in the ALMS and all have come behind the wheel of Audi R8 machines fielded by Audi Sport North America. He also has the most overall race wins of any driver in series history.
Only Olivier Beretta (14) and Karl Wendlinger (12) have more race wins in the ALMS than does Capello, though neither has won a race overall. Beretta and Wendlinger scored GTS class wins while driving Dodge Vipers for Team ORECA in 1999 and 2000. Capello also became the first driver to score two wins this season in the LMP 900 class. The popular Italian driver was part of the winning team in the season-opening 12 Hours of Sebring.
** PILGRIM REACHES MILESTONE AT ROAD AMERICA -- Andy Pilgrim, driver for Corvette Racing, reached a career milestone when he co-drove with Kelly Collins to the GTS class win in the most recent American Le Mans Series race at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis.
The win was the 50th of Pilgrim's 19-year career as a professional road racing driver, with the wins coming in 10 different racing series. Twelve of the wins have been behind the wheel of Corvette race cars, including five in the American Le Mans Series.
Pilgrim co-drove with Ron Fellows to the first ALMS win for Corvette in 2000 at Texas Motor Speedway. He was part of the development driving team on the current Corvette C5 street car.
** KRISTENSEN, COLLINS KEEP STREAKS ALIVE -- With their respective wins in the American Le Mans Series Road America 500, drivers Tom Kristensen and Kelly Collins joined an exclusive group of drivers who have scored wins in all four seasons of the series' existence.
Kristensen was part of the winning team in the very first ALMS race, the 12 Hours of Sebring in 1999, while driving a BMW Prototype. His wins in 2000, 2001 and 2002 have been for Audi Sport North America, and all of his wins have been overall victories. Earlier this year, David Brabham and Jan Magnussen became the first two drivers to win in all four seasons when they took the overall victory in the ALMS race at Infineon Raceway (formerly Sears Point).
Collins has scored GTS class wins for Corvette Racing in 2000, 2001 and 2002. He won the GT class in the 1999 Sebring race while driving a Porsche.
** ALEX JOB RACING 1-2 FINISH SETS GT RECORD -- The 1-2 finish by the Alex Job Racing team in the Road America 500 placed the Florida-based team first in GT class 1-2 finishes by a team in American Le Mans Series records.
The fourth 1-2 finish for the team was its first since the 2001 Sebring 12 Hours, snapping a three-way tie that had existed for the statistical category lead. Dick Barbour Racing (2000) and BMW Motorsport (2001) have three GT class 1-2 finishes each.
The Road America GT class win was the 12th in the ALMS for the Job team, extending its all-time leadership in that category over Barbour's nine.
Alex Job Racing drivers Timo Bernhard and Jorg Bergmeister were the winners at Road America, each collecting his first ALMS victory.
** BALLOONIST HAS TIES TO SPORTS CAR RACING -- Steve Fosset, the adventurer who has been in the news recently with his solo balloon flight around the world, has some ties to sports car racing.
Fosset has competed in the 12 Hours of Sebring two times, most recently in 1996. His first time in the historic event was 1993. In 1993, he co-drove a Chevrolet Spice SP92 with David Tennyson, Hugh Fuller and Francois Migault, finishing 11th overall and fourth in the Prototype class.
In the 1996 race, he wasn't as fortunate, finishing 53rd in a World Sports Car Chevrolet Courage C41. His co-drivers that year were Jean Paul Libert and current American Le Mans Series competitor Rick Sutherland.