THEYS SPINS AND WINS A USRRC LIME ROCK THRILLER INTENATIONAL MOSLER TEAM TAKES GT2, BMWS SWEEP GT3
LAKEVILLE, Conn. (May 31, 1999) - Didier Theys, of Belgium, came back from a late-race spin to pass Rob Dyson, of Pleasant Valley, N.Y., with less than two minutes remaining to win the two-hour, 15-minute USRRC Can-Am and GT Championship race, part of the Dodge Dealers Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park.
Theys, who teamed with Fredy Lienhard, of Switzerland, in the No. 27 Lista/Michelin/MOMO Ferrari 333 SP, led only the final two laps to beat the No. 20 Goodyear/Bosch/Hella Riley & Scott Ford driven by Dyson, Elliott Forbes-Robinson, of Sherrils Ford, N.C., and Butch Leitzinger, of State College, Pa., by 0.968-second, averaging 97.677 mph in the race slowed by only one caution for six laps.
The race started with contact in turn one between Forbes-Robinson and Lienhard, putting the No. 20 car, which started second, to the back of the pack by the end of lap one. The Dyson Racing No. 16 team car of England's Andy Wallace and James Weaver started from the pole and led Jon Field, of Dublin, Ohio, in the No. 28 Banana Joe's Lola Ford until a lap-seven caution brought out for an accident in turn five involving Jim Matthews' No. 36 Michelin/MOMO Ferrari 333 SP and Forbes-Robinson. The Ferrari sustained left-front damage and was unable to continue.
On the lap-13 restart, a four-car battle waged for the lead, including Wallace, Field, Scott Schubot's No. 8 Support Net Riley & Scott Ford and Forbes-Robinson. The lead pack was separated by no more than 1.5 seconds for the next 10 laps until Field and Forbes-Robinson were held-up in traffic. On lap 28, Wallace and Schubot came together, resulting in the Dyson car spinning back to fourth and Schubot gaining an advantage he would hold for the next 21 laps until he and Forbes-Robinson pitted.
Leitzinger took over the No. 20 car and the lead in the pits on lap 50, a spot he and Dyson would maintain until the No. 16 car of Wallace re-took the point on lap 122. Five laps later, the Riley & Scott was in the pits with battery problems handing the lead back to Dyson with Theys on the move and only 14 minutes remaining. Theys made up the 11.9-second margin in five laps and looked to make a move in traffic on Dyson with six minutes remaining, but spun passing a lapped car in the fast "Downhill" corner. Theys continued his charge after his spin, catching and passing Dyson in turn one with two laps to go.
"It's hard to find the words to express this day," said car-owner Lienhard. "This was my first victory in the U.S. and with so many guests and employees of (Leinhard's company) Lista at the race, we are very happy that the race was so close and so exciting. I knew it was a long race, so I had to find a way to keep the race close and give Didier (Theys) a chance to get on the podium. Today is a day to remember."
Dyson held on to second to keep Forbes-Robinson and Leitzinger in the Can-Am points lead, with 62 points, over Wallace, with 58. Schubot and co-driver Henry Camferdam finished third, one lap down, to equal the team's best Can-Am finish.
"I didn't want to ball the car up and I was too conservative in traffic," said Dyson. "I knew Dider (Theys) was running hard, and he probably had a better feel for when to make passes in traffic. I thought our team did a pretty good job, but Didier is one the best sports car drivers in the world. He had the experience to make a superb save on the downhill right-hander in seven. I just didn't get the job done."
Joao Barbosa, of Portugal, Loic Depailler, of France, and Canadian Stephane Roy teamed to take the GT2 class win, sixth overall, in the No. 30 Mosler Automotive Mosler Raptor, averaging 89.236 mph to top the Porsche of Stephen Earle and Michael Schromm by three laps. Barbosa set the Lime Rock Park GT2 lap record, with a time of 0:56.131 (98.768 mph) to beat the mark of 0:57.130 (97.041) set by Marc Duez in 1998.
"The race was more difficult for us than it may have looked," said Depailler, son of the late Formula One star Patrick Depailler. "It took three months to modify this car from the GT1 class to a GT2, and we came into the weekend with no basis for our setup. This was a nice weekend for our team, and we are very proud."
Boris Said, of Carlsbad, Calif., and Austrian Hans Stuck led a BMW sweep of the top four positions in GT3, despite having to pit for a splash of fuel in the late stages. Driving the No. 10 Yokohama/Flextronics/Level One BMW M3, Said survived a high-speed, off-course excursion after contact with a Can-Am car to hand the car off to Stuck, who averaged 89.166 mph to top the No. 6 team car of Peter Cunningham and Mark Simo by 17.57 seconds. The third Prototype Technology Group BMW of Brian Cunningham and Johannes van Overbeek finished third.
"I was very happy to be teamed with Boris (Said) this weekend," said Stuck. "The car was really fine, and I couldn't be happier. I knew if I maintained a consistent lap time then I would catch the leader, and I also had to account for the splash-and-go. After the splash-and-go I was happy to still be in the lead, and am proud to achieve this win."
LAKEVILLE, Conn. -- Final results from Monday's two-hour, 15-minute USRRC Can-Am and GT Championships Round Two Race, part of the Dodge Dealers Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park with finishing position, starting position in parenthesis, team, drivers with hometowns, class, car, laps complete and reason out (if any)
1. (3), Doran Lista Racing, Fredy Lienhard, Erlan Switzerland, Didier Theys, Scottsdale, Ariz., CA, Ferrari 333SP, 143.
2. (2), Dyson Racing Team Inc., Elliott Forbes-Robinson, Sherrils Ford, N.C., Butch Leitzinger, State College, Pa., Rob Dyson, Pleasant Valley, N.Y., CA, Riley & Scott Ford, 143.
3. (5), Support Net Racing, Henry Camferdam, Indianapolis, Ind., Scott Schubot, W. Palm Beach, Fla., CA, Riley & Scott Ford, 141.
4. (1), Dyson Racing Team Inc., Andy Wallace, England, James Weaver, England, CA, Riley & Scott Ford, 136.
5. (6), Intersport Racing, Jon Field, Dublin, Ohio, Nick Johnson, Newport Beach, Fla., CA, Lola Ford, 133.
6. (9), Mosler Automotive, Loic Depailler, Chermont-Ferrand, France, Stephane Roy, Quebec, Canada, Joao Barbosa, Portugal, GT2, Mosler Intruder, 131.
7. (11), Prototype Technology Group, Boris Said, Carlsbad, Calif., Hans Stuck, Austria, GT3, BMW M3, 131.
8. (12), Prototype Technology Group, Peter Cunningham, W. Bend, Wis., Mark Simo, Carlsbad, Calif., GT3, BMW M3, 131.
9. (13), Prototype Technology Group, Brian Cunningham, Danville, Ky., Johannes van Overbeek, San Francisco, Calif., GT3, BMW M3, 130.
10. (14), Ross Racing, Dr. Stephen Earle, San Atonio, Texas, Michael Schrom, Ghent, N.Y., GT2, Porsche GT2, 128.
11. (15), Aspen Knolls Racing, Shane Lewis, Stewart, Fla., Bob Mazzuoccola, Statten Island, N.Y., GT3, BMW M3, 126.
12. (16), Millennium Motorsports, David Friedman, New York, N.Y., Cort Wagner, Los Angeles, Calif., GT3, Porsche 911 RSR, 125.
13. (17), Spencer Pumpelly Racing, Spencer Pumpelly, Baltimore, Md., Josh Rehm, Plymouth, Mass., GT3, Porsche 911, 124.
14. (18), Paragon Motorsports, Scott Brunk, Federick, Md., Keith Fisher, Hamburg, N.Y., GT3, Porsche 964, 124.
15. (21), Greycliff/Netts Racing, John Drew, Chestnut Hill, Mass., Mark Greenberg, Boston, Mass., GT3, Porsche 911, 121.
16. (24), G & W Motorsports, Cort Wagner, Los Angeles, Calif., Steve Marshall, Christiansburg, Va., GT3, Porsche 911, 121.
17. (7), Downing/Atlanta Inc, Jim Downing, Atlanta, Ga., Howard Katz, New York, N.Y., CA, Kudzu DLY Mazda, 120.
18. (20), Dura Motorsports, Michael DeFontes, Baltimore, Md., Chris Thompson, Trumbull, Conn., Jerry Thompson, Manheim, Pa., GT2, Chevrolet Camaro, 119.
19. (19), Kryderacing, Reed Kryder, Canal Fulton, Ohio, John Steinmetz, New York, N.Y., GT3, Nissan 240 SX, 116.
20. (23), Extreme Motor Racing, Dean K. Clark, Scarborough, Ma., Dave Galpin, Nottingham, N.H., Glenn Seward, Brownsville, Vt., GT2, Chevrolet Corvette, 114.
21. (22), SSZ Motorcars, Jon Engle, Naples, Fla., Mark Knepper, Forest Lake, Minn., GT2, SSZ Stradale, 98.
22. (10), Executive Auto Sport, Gerry Green, Somerset, N.J., A.J. Smith, Vorhees, N.J., CA, Kudzu Buick, 38, Mech.
23. (4), Doran Matthews Racing, Mauro Baldi, Italy, Jim Matthews, Warsaw, N.C., CA, Ferrari 333SP, 4, Crash.
24. (8), Intersport Racing, Samual A. Brown, Fairfield, Conn., Andy Petery, Grenwich, Conn., CA, Riley & Scott Ford, 1, Engine.
25. (27), A.F. Works Racing Inc, Alan Friedman, Hillsdale, N.Y., Todd Snyder, Sheffield, Mass., GT3, Porsche 911, 0, DNS.
26. (25), Jacobs Motorsports Ltd., Frank Del Vecchio, Trumbull, Conn., Michael A. Jacobs, Stamford, N.Y., Jacek Mucha, Montreal Canada, CA, Courage C-41, 0, DNS.
27. (26), Toad Hall Motor Racing, Peter Kitchak, Excelsior, Minn., TBA, GT3, Porsche 911 RSR, 0, DNS.
Time of race: 2 hours, 15 minutes, 16.453 seconds.
CA/OA Average speed: 97.677 mph
CA/OA Margin of victory: 0.968-second
CA/OA Fastest race lap: No. 16 James Weaver, 0:51.263 (108.148 mph)
CA/OA Fastest qualifier: No. 16 James Weaver, 0:50.130 (110.592 mph)
CA/OA Lap leaders: Laps 1-27, No. 16 Dyson Racing; laps 28-49, No. 8 Support Net Racing; laps 50-119, No. 20 Dyson Racing; laps 120-127, No. 16 Dyson Racing; laps 128-140, No. 20 Dyson Racing; laps 141-143, No. 27 Doran-Lista.
GT2 Average speed: 89.236 mph
GT2 Margin of victory: more than three laps
GT2 Fastest race lap: No. 30 Joao Barbosa, 0:56.131 (98.768 mph)
GT2 Fastest qualifier: No. 30 Joao Barbosa, 0:55.868 (99.233 mph)
GT2 Lap leaders: Laps 1-39, No. 30 Mosler Automotive; laps 40-52, No. 83 Ross Racing; laps 53-131, No. 30 Mosler Automotive.
GT2 Average speed: 89.166 mph
GT3 Margin of victory: 17.57 seconds
GT3 Fastest race lap: No. 10 Hans Stuck, 0:58.416 (94.905 mph)
GT3 Fastest qualifier: No. 10 Boris Said, 0:57.693 (96.094 mph)
GT3 Lap leaders: Laps 1-3, No. 6 PTG; laps 4-36, No. 10 PTG; laps 37-50, No. 6 PTG; laps 51-81, No. 51 Aspen Knolls Racing; lap 82, No. 6 PTG; laps 83-131, No. 10 PTG.