Watkins Glen: Doran Racing preview

Doran Goes for Another Victory In Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen June 12 LEBANON, Ohio, June 2 - With five victories in Watkins Glen International's premier endurance sports car race, Kevin Doran already has an amazing success rate at the...

Doran Goes for Another Victory In Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen June 12

LEBANON, Ohio, June 2 - With five victories in Watkins Glen International's premier endurance sports car race, Kevin Doran already has an amazing success rate at the historic upstate New York road course.

He would like nothing better than to make it six in the Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen on Sunday, June 12 with a DORAN JE4 Daytona Prototype built by Doran Designs and fielded by Doran Racing of Lebanon, Ohio.

Race times, distances and courses (long and short) have changed through the years with various sanctioning bodies, but actually a case could be made that Doran already has six victories in the Glen's premier endurance sports car race. The race was only three hours long in June 1994, but Doran was victorious that year as a team owner and manager with the Moretti (Doran) Racing Ferrari 333SP and drivers Gianpiero Moretti and Eliseo Salazar.

Before that he was the crew chief for two victories at the Glen recorded by Holbert Racing's famous Porsches in 1985 and 1986. That team also won the race in 1984 prior to Doran signing on.

Doran also has three victories at the Glen for Ferrari. He was the mastermind behind one of the most thrilling races ever held there when Max Papis and Moretti were victorious in the Ferrari in 1996.

Two years later Doran completed the hat trick of victories at the 24 Hours of Daytona, the 12 Hours of Sebring and the Watkins Glen six-hour race when the Moretti (Doran) Racing Ferrari 333SP won again with Didier Theys, Moretti and Mauro Baldi driving. No other team has ever won American endurance sports car racing's Triple Crown in a single year, and since Sebring is sanctioned by a different organization than Daytona and the Glen now, that record is likely to remain unchallenged for years to come.

Doran's victory in 2001 was another one for the record books. A few weeks before the race he decided to forgo running the Crawford chassis he had campaigned and sent for the Ferrari 333 that had already been placed in Fredy Lienhard's race car museum. Doran and his crew took the car's Ferrari engine out and replaced it with the Crawford's Judd V10. The result was another victory, this time with Theys, Baldi and Lienhard driving.

With a record like that, any car that Kevin Doran enters at Watkins Glen has to be considered a favorite. And since the Glen is hosting more Rolex series events this year than any other track on the circuit, success there will be critical in the 2005 championship.

With so much on the line Doran Racing is looking forward to the Sahlen's Six Hours of the Glen June 10-12, run on the same track where it won the shorter Sahlen's 200 at the Glen last August.

The team will field the Crown Royal Special Reserve DORAN JE4 Lexus No. 77 for Fabrizio Gollin and Matteo Bobbi in the Glen's six-hour race this year.

Didier Theys and Jan Magnussen finished fifth in the team's entry in this event last June before winning a shorter race on the track's 3.4-mile long course last August.

In addition to the six-hour race at the Glen on June 12, the series will visit the Glen Aug. 11-12 for a race in conjunction with a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup show and on Sept. 22-24 for an event in conjunction with the Indy Racing League IndyCar series' first visit to the Glen ever. With the exception of two dates at Daytona International Raceway in Daytona Beach, Fla., no other track has multiple dates in the Rolex series this year.

Doran Labonte Racing is also scheduled to field a DORAN JE4 for NASCAR stars Bobby and Terry Labonte in the Aug. 11-12 race at the Glen just as it did in the Rolex 24 at Daytona in February. The No. 44 DORAN JE4 Pontiac will also be entered in the Paul Revere 250 at Daytona on Thursday, June 30 and the Porsche 250 at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala. July 29-31.

Gollin and Bobbi have qualified as high as second in the five races held so far this year and Bobbi led the last race, the Six Hours of Mont-Tremblant. The series rookies have been plagued by incidents during the actual racing competition, however, and to date they haven't been able to seal up what looked like sure podium finishes. Although they'll be making their first starts at the Glen as drivers, they hope that with Doran Racing behind them they'll be on the podium after the checkered falls at 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 12.

Following a track test day on Thursday, June 9, the official practice sessions that the Daytona Prototype class can participate in are scheduled to be held from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. on Friday, June 10. One more hour of practice at 2:15 p.m. that day is also on the schedule.

On Saturday, June 11 there is practice from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m.; an autograph session at 11:30 a.m., and a 15-minute qualifying session at 1:25 p.m. Since Gollin qualified at Mont-Tremblant it will be Bobbi's turn to qualify at the Glen.

The six-hour race starts at 10 a.m. on Sunday, June 12.

SPEED will cover the race live in two segments. Part 1 is scheduled to air from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., while Part 2 runs from 12:30 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. All times are Eastern.

For more information, please see doranracing.com and crownroyal.com. Bobbi's Web site is at matteobobbi.com and Gollin's is at fabriziogollin.com.

Other interesting information can be found at grandamerican.com, theglen.com, speedtv.com and restartcommunications.com.

-dr-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Terry Labonte , Fabrizio Gollin , Jan Magnussen , Didier Theys , Eliseo Salazar , Max Papis , Mauro Baldi , Matteo Bobbi , Kevin Doran , Gianpiero Moretti
Teams Doran Racing