Mid-Ohio: Doran-Lista preview

Doran-Lista Off to Mid-Ohio and Then the Glen For Two Races in Six Days; Theys to be Joined by Both Leuenberger and Magnussen LEBANON, Ohio, Aug. 3 - The pace continues to be fast for Doran-Lista Racing in August, as the team will compete in two...

Doran-Lista Off to Mid-Ohio and Then the Glen For Two Races in Six Days; Theys to be Joined by Both Leuenberger and Magnussen

LEBANON, Ohio, Aug. 3 - The pace continues to be fast for Doran-Lista Racing in August, as the team will compete in two Rolex series races within six days. The first one is the Emco Gears Mid-Ohio Road Racing Classic at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio Aug. 6-7, while the second is the Watkins Glen 200 at Watkins Glen International in Watkins Glen, N.Y. Aug. 12-13.

Team owner Kevin Doran announced today that Benjamin Leuenberger of Bellach, Solothurn, Switzerland will join lead driver Didier Theys of Scottsdale, Ariz. behind the wheel of the Doran-Lista DORAN JE4 Lexus #27 at Mid-Ohio, and Jan Magnussen of Roskilde, Denmark will be Theys' co-driver at the Glen.

Like the Paul Revere 250 at Daytona July 1-2, the race at the Glen is a preliminary event to a NASCAR Nextel Cup race.

Although Mid-Ohio is the track closest to the team's headquarters in Lebanon, Ohio and most of the team members have been competing there for literally years, Doran pointed out that a home-track advantage really doesn't exist for the team there.

"Mid-Ohio is one of the premier road courses in America, and most of the teams have been racing there for years in various series," he noted. "Most of the teams already have a plan for their set-ups and most of the drivers know what to expect because they've been racing at Mid-Ohio for years. All that makes the competition that much tougher, and diminishes any home-track advantage that we might have had."

Leuenberger has never driven at Mid-Ohio before, a fact that he's anxious to change.

"I hear that it is a great race track with plenty of challenges for the driver, so I can't wait to get behind the wheel of the Doran-Lista Lexus and learn the track," he said. "I'm also very happy to have Didier Theys as my co-driver. He is not only a very quick driver, but he also has a lot of experience. Didier helped me a lot at Daytona, and I'm looking forward to working with him again.

"I'm very excited about this huge opportunity, and I have to thank Lista and Kevin Doran for making this possible," he continued. "I really enjoyed my first race with the team at Daytona. It's a great group of professionals, and they all work very hard to achieve the best result possible."

The team is currently sixth in the overall Daytona Prototype team standings, just three points out of fifth place and nine points out of fourth. The DORAN JE4 chassis is second in the chassis manufacturer standings as the second half of the season begins, while the engine the team uses, Lexus, is currently second in the engine manufacturer standings.

Theys is in sixth place in the rankings of Daytona Prototype drivers currently with 145 points, just three points out of fifth.

Although Magnussen will only be making his fourth start with the team at the Glen, he's currently seventh in the driver listings for laps led with 58. He and Theys finished second at Mont-Tremblant, Quebec in May and fifth in the Six-Hour race at the Glen in June.

Doran-Lista didn't compete in the Mid-Ohio race last year because its new car wasn't quite finished. The team qualified second and finished third overall at the Glen in that event last year, with Theys and Bill Auberlen driving.

Both events are slated to be shown on a same-day, tape-delayed basis on the SPEED Channel. Coverage from Mid-Ohio is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. ET Aug. 7, with the action from the Glen airing at 10 p.m. Eastern Aug. 13.

-dlr/lm-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Didier Theys , Bill Auberlen , Benjamin Leuenberger , Kevin Doran