RACE SUSPENDED DUE TO HEAVY RAIN At just under the midway point of the 10 hour/1000 Mile Petit Le Mans race, track action has been suspended by the Race Director due to extremely heavy rain and unsafe track conditions at Road Atlanta.
RACE SUSPENDED DUE TO HEAVY RAIN
At just under the midway point of the 10 hour/1000 Mile Petit Le Mans race, track action has been suspended by the Race Director due to extremely heavy rain and unsafe track conditions at Road Atlanta. Mika Salo's Ferrari F430 GT is currently leading the GT2 class with a lap in hand thanks to an inspired early strategy call for wet Michelin tires. The cars are currently lined up in pit lane, all covered to protect them from the rain, and will remain there until such time that the Race Officials decide the future of the race.
As the skies darkened and the rain started to fall, the #62 car was the first in the GT class to make the change from slick to wet tires, while under the sixth of the seven (to date) full course yellow periods. This allowed Salo -- in increasingly heavy rain -- to pass all his competitors, first on the track and then additionally as they all had to pit for their own wet tires.
Mika Salo, said at the time the red flag was thrown, "It was really, really bad; the officials had no choice but to stop the race. We hope we can get things going again, but the weather radar shows a lot more heavy rain to come so we'll have to wait and see."
Declared a "wet race" prior to the start, Jaime Melo took the Ferrari up to fifth place in class by fifth lap and ran strongly in changing track conditions to keep in touch with the two Corvettes and two Porsches ahead. Pierre Kaffer continued the good work, despite continual pressure from the #87 Farnbacher Porsche, and great pit work by the Risi crew -- together with the tire call -- ensured that the team holds its current position leading the class.