Laguna Seca: AIM Doncaster preview

top safety A lot of attention is paid to driver safety, but team members are protected, too. The AIM Autosport crew was the first in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series to wear helmets in pit lane for all track sessions. They started ...

top safety

A lot of attention is paid to driver safety, but team members are protected, too. The AIM Autosport crew was the first in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series to wear helmets in pit lane for all track sessions. They started with standard helmets, but switched to a motocross style last month. Their GT-class counterparts at Doncaster Racing also plan to don helmets, starting this week at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif.

The AIM crew who prepare the No. 61 Lexus-powered Riley Mk XI work primarily over the car, so their priority is light weight and peripheral vision. The prominent visor on the AIM helmets didn't work for the Doncaster team because much of their work is under the No. 17 MineStar / Tim Horton's Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. They opted for more traditional helmets -- adorned with the team's trademark Canadian maple leaf.

"I had helmets for the crew at the start of the year but they were too bulky and restricted line of sight so the guys did not want to wear them," AIM co-owner Ian Willis explained. "After they saw a wheel and tire hit another team's crew member, we talked about a helmet that would offer protection, but address the issues of line of sight and comfort. We came up with a BMX-style helmet which offers both light weight and excellent line of sight, while also providing protection for head and face."

gold guests

AIM Autosport will welcome guests of its primary sponsor, Exchange Traded Gold, for the May 20 Rolex Series DP race at Laguna Seca. Exchange Traded Gold securities offer a means of participating in the gold bullion market without taking physical delivery of gold, and to buy and sell by trading on a regulated stock exchange. AIM is also supported by Barrick Gold Corporation, RBC Financial Group and Telus' Mike Network.

The gold AIM Riley will be driven by Burt Frisselle of Lynchburg, Va., and Mark Wilkins of Toronto. Brother Brian Frisselle will do double race duty as a team spotter and guest guide.

executive fifth

Doncaster Racing is fifth in series class standings heading into the May 19 Rolex Series GT race on the 2.238-mile Laguna Seca road course. The Doncaster Porsche is driven by Toronto executives Dave Lacey and Greg Wilkins, so the team does not have the luxury of testing outside race weekends, making their top-five performance even more impressive.

"We're competitive guys in business, competitive guys on the golf course, competitive guys in the lineup at the ski hill. We don't come to the race track to cruise around for a Sunday afternoon drive," Wilkins explained. "We take it seriously. It helps that we've got good teammates, a good crew, a good engineer and a good team manager, so we put a very professional effort on the track."

-credit: -- aimautosport.com --

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Burt Frisselle , Dave Lacey , Mark Wilkins , Brian Frisselle