USA: Gelles Racing Putnam Park test notes

Hard work at Putnam Park for Gelles Racing Front Royal, July 15th, 2005. -- The mid-season official BMW USA testing session at Putnam Park proved to be very constructive for Gelles Racing this week. For two days, five drivers shared the ...

Hard work at Putnam Park for Gelles Racing

Front Royal, July 15th, 2005. -- The mid-season official BMW USA testing session at Putnam Park proved to be very constructive for Gelles Racing this week. For two days, five drivers shared the team's FB2 single seaters around this Indiana facility proving to be the perfect training ground for engineers and drivers. The 1.8-mile 10-turn track provides all types of corners and setup routines as possible for series regular drivers. On the other hand, evaluation is also possible with newcomers. All of the teams where on hand and Gelles drivers turned steady and fast times at the front of the field.

"Putnam Park is a very nice training facility, declared team owner Bob Gelles. This is the kind of place where our engineers can work on car setup strategies with our drivers. The track is short but every turn is different and provides our staff with lots of data. Drivers and race engineers can analyze every outing while the car is being prepared for the next session. I have fond memories of this circuit, myself having won many WKA enduro karting races here in the past. From our regular roster, we had Maxime Soulet, Darin Marcus and Ryan Campbell and we also welcomed two rookies who will take part in the next BMW USA Valencia licensing classes later this month."

Wet and dry conditions

The drivers had to deal with the tail of Hurricane Dennis, which meant the track was wet or damp most of the times or had a dry line at best. "The occasion was perfect for those who do not encounter wet tracks very often. Our top driver was again Maxime Soulet, who clocked the fastest times on both days and was the only one in the 1:14 range. At times, Maxime, a member of the Thierry Boutsen development group, was even three or four seconds ahead of the pack in wet conditions. No wonder when you think this guy comes from Belgium where the weather changes on the hour!

Darin Marcus and Ryan Campbell used their seat time to improve their skills and communication with their crew. Darin did a great job and his times were comparable with the best five on the track. Ryan is an intelligent driver who improves every time he takes to the track. This Canadian lad is on a two-year program with us and we think he will be among the contenders in 2006. All times are unofficial.

Yannick and Maxime

Among all teams in North America, Gelles Racing has welcomed the largest number of drivers from Quebec and 2005 is no exception. Yannick Hofman and Maxime Pelletier took their turns at Putnam Park to experience the FB2 machine. "Considering the weather conditions and the fact they were in this kind of racing environment for the first time, added Gelles, we have to be happy with their performances. Both will enter the BMW shoot-out in Valencia and those two days clearly made them friendlier with this exciting racing machine."

Next rounds: Barber Motorsports Park

Gelles Racing will now get ready for the next two rounds at the end of July (29 -- 31) at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama with Grand-Am Rolex. Drivers will benefit from another testing day on the 28th.

-gr-

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Thierry Boutsen , Darin Marcus , Maxime Soulet , Ryan Campbell , Yannick Hofman , Maxime Pelletier