Sebring: Johnny Mowlem race report

MOWLEM TAKES SEBRING GT2 WIN IN RISI COMPETIZIONE FERRAR SEBRING, Fla. (March 10, 2007) - Two starts and two wins for Johnny Mowlem and the Risi Competizione sports car team in the American Le Mans Series. Mowlem teamed with Jaime Melo and ...

MOWLEM TAKES SEBRING GT2 WIN IN RISI COMPETIZIONE FERRAR

SEBRING, Fla. (March 10, 2007) - Two starts and two wins for Johnny Mowlem and the Risi Competizione sports car team in the American Le Mans Series.

Mowlem teamed with Jaime Melo and former Formula One star Mika Salo to take a memorable victory in the GT2 class in the 12 Hours of Sebring in a Ferrari 430 GT prepared by the famed Risi team. Mowlem won the GT2 class in his previous start with the team.

"Probably the most amazing race I've ever been a part of," Mowlem said. "It was an absolute privilege to be a part of the Risi Competizione Ferrari team. The whole team were on it from the moment the green flag flew and that's what it takes to win a big race like the Sebring 12 hours. Also, both my teammates did an amazing job and Jaime losing the lead on the last lap, and then retaking it on the last corner, has to be one of the most exciting finished to an ALMS race ever!"

The victory gives Mowlem class victories in two of the world's most prestigious sports car races. He also owns a victory in the 24 Hours of Daytona. He'll go for a career sweep of the three biggest endurance races this summer when he drives for Risi Competizione again in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Mowlem climbed into the car four hours, 27 minutes into the Sebring race. He held a 37-second lead when he took the Ferrari back out on the racing surface. When he exited the car, Mowlem had built the advantage to more than a lap over the next GT2 competitor.

Every second of that advantage proved to be important later.

A few technical issues and a late race, 20-second penalty for a pit stop infringement meant that a lot of the Risi Ferrari's former advantage was wiped out. Eventually Melo won a door-banging duel coming out of the final corner of the race to take the class victory. The GT finish was reminiscent of an American-style stock car race.

Mowlem and his mates won the race in front of a world-wide television audience and the car was among those that had in-car camera coverage through the entire event via the Speed.com website.

One of Britain's most successful and personable sports car drivers, Mowlem started his career behind the wheel at age 19. He was named the 2005 UK Reading Sports Personality of the Year, an honor reserved for the top sports performers in his region. A married father of two, Mowlem was raised in Majorca, Spain. He has earned university degrees in economics and Spanish. More information on Mowlem is available at www.johnnymowlem.com.

-credit: jm

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Jaime Melo , Johnny Mowlem
Teams Risi Competizione