An all-night repair operation by the Archangel Motorsport Lola team looked like paying off in the sixth round of the American Le Mans Series atTrois Rivieres, Canada, as Ben Devlin and his Canadian co-driver, Marc-Antoine Camirand, headed the...
An all-night repair operation by the Archangel Motorsport Lola team looked like paying off in the sixth round of the American Le Mans Series atTrois Rivieres, Canada, as Ben Devlin and his Canadian co-driver, Marc-Antoine Camirand, headed the LMP675 category until the penultimate lap of the three-hour street race.
Mike Johnson's Archangel team was then cruelly robbed as the Millington Ford turbo engine failed just two and a half minutes from the finish, Devlin crossing the line to start his final lap with flames pouring from the engine compartment. Unfortunately he failed to make it roundthe 1.5 mile track, and was passed by the Team Bucknum Pilbeam Nissan which took the class honours.
Neither of the two MG Lola EX257s got far in the race. Steve Knight, who started from fifth place on the 26-car grid, only got as far as the first corner when he got involved in a fracas with Johnny Herbert's Champion Audi, retiring on the spot with damaged front suspension.
Jon and Clint Field shared theIntersport Lola MG EX257, but Jon managed only 29 laps before spinning out and being unable to restart the four-cylinder turbo engine. Like some others, the Intersport Lola team had to start from near the back of the grid after qualifying was red-flagged to remove the wreckage of the Archangel Lola-Ford B2K/40, which was crashed heavily by Camirand.
When the qualifying session was green flagged, Clint Field set off on his first lap from the pits only to face thechequered flag at the timing line, a similar setback causing race winner Tom Kristensen to start from 20th position on the grid.
Intersport's Lola J udd B2K/10 started strongly in the hands of Andy Lally, running fifth overall in the early laps behind two Audis and two Panoz, only to lose a lot of time in the pits having a new alternator installed. Lally and John Macaluso eventually finished seventh in the LMP900 category after a brave catch-up race.
Third in the LMP675 class were Melanie Paterson and Paul Fix in the Essex Racing Lola Nissan B2K/40, which had a minor accident during the race warm-up session and was involved in another incident when Fix hit the tyre wall, following the example of a Viper driver who was caught out by oil and 'marbles' which made the track extremely treacherous at Turn 1. "We had bad luck through the weekend" said Melanie Paterson, "but it was a good end to aninteresting week and now I am looking forward to our next race at Mosport in two week's time."
Audi swept to a 1-2-3 victory at Trois Rivieres, Kristensen and Rinaldo 'Dindo' Capello beating their team-mates Emanuele Pirro and Frank Biela by 17.8 seconds after three hours of bruising competition. Johnny Herbert and Stefan Johansson finished third, a lap behind, in the Champion Racing Audi R8 despite making an extra stop at the end of the opening lapto have a new engine cover fitted.