Doran vs. Dyson - years of rivalry, domination at The Glen. WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 14, 2002) -- There have been many great rivalries in motorsports, but few can equal the one that has developed over the last eight years between Cincinnati's ...
Doran vs. Dyson - years of rivalry, domination at The Glen.
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 14, 2002) -- There have been many great rivalries in motorsports, but few can equal the one that has developed over the last eight years between Cincinnati's Doran Racing and New York's Dyson Racing. The two sports car giants have dominated Watkins Glen International, winning every professional sports car race at the historic track since 1994. The next chapter in their fierce rivalry will be written next weekend when they take to The Glen's 3.4-mile road course for the 6 Hours of The Glen.
New York businessman Rob Dyson began his racing career at Watkins Glen in 1975 when he attended a driving school there. A year later he picked up his first professional victory at the track. Four years later, Kevin Doran participated in his first race at The Glen as a member of an Indy car pit crew. By 1985 the rivalry between the two men had already begun. Dyson had previously created his own race team, while Doran joined Holbert Racing, a team he became crew chief of in 1986. The two teams faced off against each other for several years. The competitiveness between the pair continued in 1989 when Doran also created his own team.
Their domination of The Glen was sparked in 1994 when Gianpiero Moretti and Eliseo Salazar captured the checkered flag in Doran's Ferrari 333SP at the Exxon World Sports Car Glen Continental. Since then, only Doran or Dyson race cars have entered The Glen's Victory Circle. Although the sanctioning of the races has changed hands twice and their lengths have been altered from three hours to six hours to a newly added 250-mile race, the Doran and Dyson teams' presence in Victory Circle has been steadfast. And at seven of the nine races since 1994, both sets of drivers could be seen on the podium together, as the teams garnered first and second place.
There is some debate over who leads the battle of The Glen. Officially, Dyson Racing has won five races in which points were awarded, while Doran Racing has won only four. It is the 2000 Qualifying Sprint Race that is the source of the slight controversy. Although championship points were awarded for the race, only one driver competed from each team and it also served as qualifying for the Six Hours of The Glen, causing many to question if it truly should be considered a separate race. Regardless of the debate, everyone agrees the rivalry is among the closest in history.
The eight-year domination of The Glen by the pair of teams has seen some of the world's best road racers slide behind the wheel of their race cars in search of the top spot on the podium. Gianpiero Moretti, Eliseo Salazar, Max Papis, Rob Morgan, Didier Theys and Mauro Baldi are among those who have piloted Doran's entries against drivers like James Weaver, Elliott Forbes-Robinson, Andy Wallace and Butch Leitzinger in Dyson's machines.
"(Dyson crew chief) Pat Smith always turns out a really good car, and Rob always has really fast drivers. Good team. Good drivers. Good cars. They are a lot of fun to compete with," Doran admits.
Today, a new rivalry is growing between the two teams in the junior ranks. Rob Dyson's 24-year-old son Chris has joined the driver lineup on his father's team, while 22-year-old Fredy Lienhard Jr., son of Doran Lista Racing sponsor and driver Fredy Lienhard, has moved behind the wheel of Doran's car.
"The potential (for a new rivalry) is obviously there. Performance wise, on the track they are very competitive with each other," Doran notes. "As long as they are going to be racing against each other, I think you will see a special rivalry between Fredy Jr. and Chris Dyson."
Lienhard Jr. picked up his first Rolex Series win in the inaugural road race at California Speedway earlier this season, only to see Chris Dyson help end Doran Lista's three-race winning streak at the very next race in Phoenix.
"It was a seminal event in the life of the Dyson family (when Chris won at Phoenix), with the baton being passed to my son," remarked the elder Dyson. "I am really impressed with Chris and the job that he is doing. I envy his youth and I value his companionship."
The two junior drivers will help determine if their teams' domination of The Glen will continue next weekend when they face off against each other in the 6 Hours of The Glen. Lienhard Jr. will partner with Theys and Baldi in the #27 Judd-powered Dallara, while Dyson joins Weaver in the #16 Ford-engined Riley & Scott. The Dyson team has also entered a second car into the endurance race, with the senior Dyson teaming up with Leitzinger and Forbes-Robinson in hopes of improving the chance of a blue-and-white Dyson Riley & Scott in Victory Circle.
Despite a rivalry that is nearly as old as their junior racers, Dyson and Doran maintain a strong friendship and respect for each other. "We have grown to be good friends over the years. (Rob and Pat) are very good people... great people," Doran commented. "Off the racetrack, I would consider us really good friends. Our competition really only extends from the green flag to the checkered flag."
The next chapter in the Doran vs. Dyson rivalry will be written next weekend during the 6 Hours of The Glen, part of the Sports Car Grand Prix at Watkins Glen International, June 21-23. For tickets, reserved camping, and additional information about the Sports Car Grand Prix contact The Glen ticket office at 607-535-2481 or log on to the official Watkins Glen website at www.theglen.com. More information on the Rolex Sports Car Series and Grand-Am Cup Street Stock Series can be found online at www.grand-am.com.
Doran vs. Dyson Rivalry Streak at The Glen
1994 - Doran Racing wins the three-hour World Sports Car Glen Continental with Gianpiero Moretti and Eliseo Salazar driving the Ferrari 333SP.
1995 - Dyson Racing wins the three-hour World Sports Car Glen Continental XII with James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger driving the Ford-powered Riley & Scott. Mauro Baldi and Fermin Velez finish second in Doran's Ferrari 333SP.
1996 - Doran Racing wins the World Sports Car First Union Six Hours with Max Papis and Gianpiero Moretti driving the Ferrari 333SP. Andy Wallace, Butch Leitzinger and James Weaver finish second in Dyson's Ford Riley & Scott.
1997 - Dyson Racing wins the World Sports Car First Union Six Hours with Elliott Forbes-Robinson and Butch Leitzinger driving the Ford Riley & Scott.
1998 - Doran Racing wins the USRRC Six Hours of The Glen with Mauro Baldi, Didier Theys and Gianpiero Moretti driving the Ferrari 333SP. James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger finish second in the Dyson Racing Ford Riley & Scott.
1999 - No Sports Car Race at Watkins Glen
2000 - Dyson Racing wins the Rolex Sports Car Series Qualifying Sprint Race with James Weaver driving the Ford Riley & Scott. Didier Theys finishes second in Doran Lista's Judd Ferrari.
Dyson Racing wins the Rolex Sports Car Series Six Hours of The Glen with James Weaver, Andy Wallace and Butch Leitzinger driving the Ford Riley & Scott.
2001 - Doran Lista Racing wins the Rolex Sports Car Series Six Hours of The Glen with Mauro Baldi, Didier Theys and Fredy Lienhard Sr. driving the Judd Ferrari. James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger finish second in Dyson's Ford Riley & Scott.
Dyson Racing wins the Rolex Sports Car Series Bully Hill Vineyards 250 with James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger driving the Ford Riley & Scott. Mauro Baldi and Didier Theys finish second in Doran Lista's Judd Ferrari.