Utah: Pirelli preview

PIRELLI TEAMS HEAD WEST LOOKING FOR MORE SUCCESS Aston Martin and Panoz Hope to Build on Early Season Results SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, July 12, 2006 After scoring nine victories and 27 podiums in the first ten GT races worldwide this season, ...

PIRELLI TEAMS HEAD WEST LOOKING FOR MORE SUCCESS
Aston Martin and Panoz Hope to Build on Early Season Results

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, July 12, 2006 After scoring nine victories and 27 podiums in the first ten GT races worldwide this season, Pirelli-shod teams head west this week to Salt Lake City and Portland for Rounds 5 and 6 of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) scheduled for Saturday, July 8 and July 15, respectively.

Aston Martin Racing is particularly keen to repeat its success at this month's New England Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park where they sat on the GT1 pole (their third in four races) and the #009 Aston Martin DBR9 of Pedro Lamy (Portugal) and Stephane Sarrazin (France) beat the #003 Corvette C6R by the closest margin (0.033 seconds) in ALMS class history. Teammates Darren Turner (UK) and Tomas Enge (Czech Republic) finished third in the #007 car and gained another podium result for Pirelli the eighth in ALMS this season.

The win was significant in that the dominant factory Corvettes had not been beaten in 12 ALMS races. The Astons have definitely challenged the yellow C6Rs all season, finishing second at Sebring and third at Houston and MidOhio with two fastest laps. Aston Martin Racing and Pirelli are currently second in GT1 points with Lamy and Sarrazin third and Enge and Turner fourth in the Drivers' Championship. For the race at Salt Lake City, Lamy, who has a commitment at the Nurburgring this weekend, will be substituted by Italian driver, Andrea Piccini.

The brand new 4.5-mile, 24-turn Miller Motorsports Park near Salt Lake City is the longest road racing circuit in North America and should be a perfect track for the powerful Astons and Corvettes to "let it all hang out" so Pirelli is bringing a new P Zero radial to improve the team's chances of repeating its Lime Rock victory.

The Lime Rock win was actually Pirelli's second-straight as a Pirelli-shod Panoz Esperante entered by the British Team LNT took the victory in the GT2 class at Le Mans, the first win for Panoz at the historic 24-hour event and the first ever by a non-Porsche entry.

With Australia's David Brabham and Canadian Scott Maxwell's win in the #50 Multimatic Panoz at the season opening 12 Hours of Sebring, Panoz and Pirelli can now claim victory in both classic endurance races this year. Although the Toronto-based Multimatic team wasn't so fortunate at Le Mans, Brabham and Maxwell have podiumed in two of the first four rounds of the ALMS. Multimatic, Panoz and Pirelli are all second in points in the GT2 class going into Salt Lake City. As always, Brabham and Maxwell will be joined by Americans Gunnar Jeannette and Tom Milner in the #51 Panoz.

-www.pirellicompetizioni.com.

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Andrea Piccini , Tomas Enge , David Brabham , Darren Turner , Stéphane Sarrazin , Pedro Lamy , Scott Maxwell , Gunnar Jeannette
Teams Aston Martin Racing , Team LNT