A Flying Lizard Podium Finish in Team's First 24 Heures du Mans
June 19, 2005--Le Mans, France - - In the most famous sports car race in the world, the 24 Heures du Mans, Flying Lizard Motorsports finished third in GT2 today and 14th overall. It was the team's first appearance at the event. Johannes van Overbeek, Lonnie Pechnik and Seth Neiman stood on the podium at the historic circuit today, cheered on by the Flying Lizard crew who made it possible.
In the 24-hour marathon of racing in which only 60 percent of the starting teams completed the race, the Lizards drove consistently throughout. "We ran a very strong, solid race. We focused from the beginning on being consistent, with as few errors as possible. A broken air jack set us back slightly early on, but we were able to push back to third place for the last quarter of the race," said van Overbeek. "We are so excited: a podium finish at our first race at Le Mans! It hasn't really even sunk in yet."
"We invested a lot of time and energy into preparing and it showed in the result," added crew chief Tommy Sadler. "I think we were better prepared for this race than anything we've done before. We had few problems and those that we did have were very minor." With temperatures hovering near the hundred-degree mark on Sunday under a blistering sun, drivers battled heat exhaustion over the day. "The preparation allowed us to focus on managing our race and tire strategy and dealing with the unanticipated heat issues," he added.
"The nighttime stints were both the toughest driving I've ever done and the most fun. It was a thrill just to be here and be a part of this," added Pechnik. "And the crew, as always, did an incredible job - everything from the preparation, to managing our pre-race engine change without a hitch, to dealing with the unexpected during the race - they were up to every challenge and made all of this possible."
"A huge thanks to our partners Michelin and Porsche. In an endurance event marked by attrition, it was a pleasure to be in a Porsche. And even in this heat we were able to keep double-stinting our Michelin tires - that gave us an advantage over the length of the race," added Seth Neiman. "And everything about our experience showed how much the area here is steeped in the history of racing. We were honored to be a part of it."
Up next for Flying Lizard is the New England Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park in Connecticut, July 4, 2005. For more, see www.lizardms.com.