Monza: Team Modena race report

Monza Victory for Team Modena! Team Modena took victory in yesterday's 1000km Le Mans Series race at Monza, Italy, Antonio Garcia and Tomas Enge pushing hard all race in an exciting LM GT1 class lead battle, to win by just 12-seconds. The ...

Monza Victory for Team Modena!

Team Modena took victory in yesterday's 1000km Le Mans Series race at Monza, Italy, Antonio Garcia and Tomas Enge pushing hard all race in an exciting LM GT1 class lead battle, to win by just 12-seconds. The team's Aston Martin DBR9 was on the class pace all weekend, and claimed 15th overall in the 45-car LMS field, taking the team's first podium finish of the 2008 season at one of motorsport's most famous circuits after 152-laps of hard racing.

The race was a battle between the Team Modena DBR9 and the quickest of the French run Corvettes, the lead changing hands several times across the race. Tomas was in the Aston Martin for the final run to the flag and came through to take the win in a race that alternated between Safety Car periods and flat out running at the high-speed circuit.

"That was a hard fought battle," said Team Principal Graham Schultz, "and we had a few issues on the way. On our third pit stop the Porsche in the next pit overran and blocked our fuel rig - and the guys just manually lifted the rig to reposition it and got us back out. That put us back behind the Corvette, but Antonio was superb and reeled them back in, and Tomas did the job in his final two stints. This weekend was a fantastic team effort."

Team Modena Announce 2008 Le Mans 24-Hours Driver Line-Up

Team Modena's driver line-up for June's Le Mans 24-Hour race can now be confirmed with Christian Fittipaldi, Jos Menten and Terry Borcheller taking on the driving duties in the world-famous French endurance event. Christian and Jos raced for the team at Le Mans in 2007, while Terry has extensive sportscar experience and has competed at Le Mans four times before. The pressure will be on for the drivers - Team Modena's Aston Martin DBR9 has never failed to finish in its two previous Le Mans outings, taking ninth overall in 2006.

"I think we have a fantastic driver line up for Le Mans," says Team Principal Graham Schultz. "We are excited to have Terry Borcheller join us for the race and know him from our links with the Bell Motorsport Aston Martin in the US. He knows Christian and they will work well together, and Jos simply slotted in with us last year and did a great job. We have a good squad and are confident about our chances."

Rik Bryan, Team Modena Sporting Director says: "I think that we have put together a very strong driver line-up for this year, and for the first time at Le Mans we are taking three drivers who all have previous Le Mans experience - the event deserves that respect! It's great to re-unite Christian and Jos who did such a fantastic job for us last year, despite luck not being on our side! And we are very grateful to Acura and Andretti-Green Racing for letting us "borrow" Christian!

"Terry is a great addition to Christian and Jos for this year, with his considerable experience at Le Mans and with the Bell Motorsports Aston Martin DBR9 in the ALMS. I think that they will all work very well together, and we are looking to improve on the fourth in GT1 and ninth overall result from 2006. I would also like to take this opportunity to pass on my best wishes to Antonio Garcia, who is on loan to Aston Martin Racing for this year's Le Mans."

The three drivers all bring experience and pace to the team, Brazilian Christian has extensive motorsport experience including Formula One, as well as having competed in numerous endurance and sportscar campaigns with previous victories in the Daytona and Spa 24-Hours races. Dutchman Jos demonstrated his speed and racecraft with the team last year, while Terry is racing a DBR9 in the US this season with Bell Motorsport, who receive support from Team Modena, and has been on the Le Mans podium before.

"I'm very happy in being able to go back to Le Mans with Team Modena," says 37-year-old Christian, who also joined Team Modena for four Le Mans Series races last season. "Our car was very competitive last year until we hit problems. It's the team's third time in the famous race and hopefully that experience will help.

"I have driven with Terry in America and with Jos last year, both have Le Mans experience and are very quick - that will for sure play a major role in the outcome of the race. Competition is going to be hard, but I'm excited and looking forward to it."

"I'm glad to be back!" says 27-year-old Jos. "My experience with Team Modena in the 24-Hours of Le Mans 2007 was very positive. Lady luck wasn't on our side but we worked as a team to bring the car to the finish. In the end the team went on to win the Prix Escra, which underlines the staff's technical capacities and know-how.

"Just like last year we'll be facing very strong competition in the LM GT1-class. It's hard to make any predications but we'll do our best to finish the race as high as possible!"

"It will be my first time at Le Mans in an Aston Martin," said Florida-based 42-year-old Terry, "and the first time not racing for an American team. I have been there three times in a GT1 car so I know the competition will be tough, we are up against some of the best sportscar teams in the world, but it will be fun to challenge them as a privateer team.

"I have raced with Christian before though I have never met Jos, but I am pleased to be involved and it is great just to be asked to join the team for the race."

The Le Mans test day is scheduled for June 1st, with the race itself taking place over the weekend of June 14th / 15th.

-credit: teammodena.com

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About this article
Series European Le Mans
Drivers Tomas Enge , Antonio Garcia , Christian Fittipaldi , Terry Borcheller , Jos Menten