Road Atlanta II: Aston Martin preview

Aston Martin Racing Completes Preparations for Road Atlanta Aston Martin Racing has completed preparations for its return to the American Le Mans Series, having tested the two DBR9 chassis at the Road Atlanta circuit at the ...

Aston Martin Racing Completes Preparations for Road Atlanta

Aston Martin Racing has completed preparations for its return to the American Le Mans Series, having tested the two DBR9 chassis at the Road Atlanta circuit at the weekend.

The test went well with both cars collecting data for their debut at the 1000-mile, or ten-hour, race at the Georgian circuit this weekend (October 1). "The test went really well, both cars ran pretty much 100 per cent reliably and we know where we are with the tyres and the set-up," said Team Principal George Howard-Chappell.

The team has concentrated on improving driver cooling since the cars last raced in the ALMS, winning the opening round at Sebring in March. "There is a lot more air going into the car now, and the cockpit is much better insulated so we can achieve temperatures that a driver can live with, particularly when they have their cool suit on," said Howard-Chappell.

The test was an ideal opportunity for Aston Martin Racing drivers Darren Turner, Pedro Lamy and Jonny Kane to learn their way around the undulating, exciting circuit. "Road Atlanta is one of the hardest tracks I have had to learn," said Turner. "It took me about 10 laps to really get into it. It is nice to come to a circuit that makes you concentrate; you have to show this track respect. I am looking forward to being back in the ALMS again, especially against the Corvettes!"

Lamy added; "The circuit is difficult to learn because there are a few blind corners, but it is really enjoyable. I like turn 12 the best as it is fast, and it is technical."

Kane is new to the team, the car and the circuit, but settled in well during the test. He will share the no. 57 car with David Brabham and Turner, winners at Sebring. "The car has taken a bit of getting used to," said the Irishman. "It has great downforce and carbon brakes which I haven't used for a couple of years. It feels quite stable and the engine is very good, you can really carry a lot of speed into the corners. The track itself is quite narrow so once we get other cars and traffic out there, it will be quite tricky, but it is really good fun to drive."

Lamy and Peter Kox, winners of the historic Tourist Trophy at Silverstone in May, will be joined by Tomas Enge in the no. 58 car for this race only. Lamy and Kox will drive together at the final round, a four-hour race at Laguna Seca on October 15.

Kox has raced in Atlanta five times, for Ferrari and Lamborghini. "I am looking forward to racing in Atlanta, particularly because it is back in the US again, which I like," said the Dutchman. "The circuit has a beautiful layout with its last corner and the first section as my favourites. Obviously our biggest competition will be the Corvettes, but the Saleen is also very fast and so is the Maserati. However, the Pratt and Miller boys make few mistakes, and this is just what we must do to stand a chance against them."

-amr-

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Tomas Enge , David Brabham , Pedro Lamy , Peter Kox , Jonny Kane , George Howard-Chappell
Teams Aston Martin Racing