Utah: Corsa Motorsports preview

REVOLUTIONARY GZ09 HYBRID WILL DEBUT AT THE UTAH GRAND PRIX The Corsa Motorsports Ginetta-Zytek hybrid prototype race car made its long awaited, first public appearance this week. It will run in its first race this weekend. The...

REVOLUTIONARY GZ09 HYBRID WILL DEBUT AT THE UTAH GRAND PRIX

The Corsa Motorsports Ginetta-Zytek hybrid prototype race car made its long awaited, first public appearance this week. It will run in its first race this weekend.

The car, 13-months in production, is the headline entry in the American LeMans Series' Larry H. Miller Utah Grand Prix.

Qualifying will begin on Saturday. The car will race in the high-speed LMP1 class on Sunday at the Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah.

The main focus of the LeMans event will be on Corsa's new hybrid, a race car designed entirely around space-age "green'' technology.

The car was shipped to the United Kingdom last year and, under the direction of Zytek engineers, transformed into a hybrid race car capable of being competitive at high speeds. Zytek has a long and successful history in electric-car technology.

The Corsa car employs a Kinetic Energy Recovery System that turns mechanical energy, from a fuel-powered internal combustion engine, into more efficient electrical energy, which will run an onboard DC motor.

Steve Pruitt, owner of the Salt Lake City-based Corsa Motorsports, compared this weekend's race to the NASA space program and Alan Shepherd's sub-orbital 15-minute flight in space

"We are, just now, at this race, doing the sub-orbital flight. There are a lot of things we don't know at this point. A lot of questions will be answered at this race. The technology we're using isn't space age, but it's not far off,'' he said.

The car was tested in England last week and then brought to Utah.

When the car takes the track on Friday for test runs, it will be the first time both mechanical and electrical systems will be engaged, "so there's a lot of hope and faith riding in this race,'' said Pruitt.

During this race, the car will alternate on demand between mechanical and electrical power for optimal performance throughout the race. How the captured energy is going to be applied, however, is but one of the unknowns engineers will be studying.

Driving honors during the LeMans race will be shared by Johnny Mowlem and Stefan Johansson. The car is sponsored by the Salt Lake Hilton.

The race also part of the season-long MICHELIN Green X Challenge. Tickets for the race are available at americanlemans.com or millermotorsportspark.com.

-credit: cm

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Series ALMS
Drivers Stefan Johansson , Johnny Mowlem , Steve Pruitt , Alan Shepherd