NA-F2000: Dana LaLiberte Motorsports Mid-Ohio preview

PRESS RELEASE CONTACT: John Peckham FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 5, 1997 e-mail address: johnp@umich.edu LaLiberte...

PRESS RELEASE CONTACT: John Peckham FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 5, 1997 e-mail address: johnp@umich.edu

LaLiberte Looks to Become Tenth Winner of Season

ANN ARBOR, MI---Dana LaLiberte is entering this weekend's United States Formula Ford 2000 race with one thing in mind: to become the series' tenth winner this year in as many races.

The series, supporting CART, IRL, NASCAR, and SCCA Trans-Am races, is known for its competitive nature. Currently 49 drivers are entered for this weekend's Mid-Ohio race, most of them young, talented drivers with a legitimate shot at winning.

Headlining the entry list for this weekend's race are Urubatan Helou Jr., Rino Mastronardi, Buddy Rice, Duncan Dayton, Jeff Shafer, Luciano Zangirolami, Zak Morioka, Ryan Hampton and Andrea De Lorenzi...winners of the previous nine races this season.

"Sure we have a shot at winning," declares LaLiberte. "We have brought the car to a level we have never been at before. We are going faster than last year. It will be very tough, but we have a legitimate chance for a very good finish!"

LaLiberte will be driving for his Dana LaLiberte Motorsports team, which looks to be in its strongest position to compete against the front runners since they began racing in Formula Ford 2000. The team has been developing its Van Diemen RF95 throughout the season, and has improved technically.

It is due to a series of setbacks, however, that the small team was forced to regroup and solve its problems. January's United States Formula Ford 2000 National Championship season opener was the harshest set back of the season, as the wall at Walt Disney World Motor Speedway took a large bite out of the teams confidence and budget.

"It was tough to get motivated to go back to racing after Orlando," recalls Dana LaLiberte, team driver. "To have a major crash like that in the season opener really hurt the team. We have had to work very hard to return to the position that we are in today, and in fact, we are better than we were before. We have a better understanding of the car and what we can do with it."

Most of the teams miniscule budget was used rebuilding the car after the Orlando crash, but they spent what they could and have improved from there.

"We didn't have the money to buy any of the development pieces after the Orlando crash. We actually went back to running the oldest wings in the front, but we have worked with them, improving them, so that we are doing just as well as the newer cars."

Choosing Mid-Ohio to make the teams return to professional racing bodes well for the team.

"I had a very good run in the race here last year. We didn't qualify as well as we had hoped, but we worked with it and got the car into the top twenty very early in the race. This year we have improved on all the problems that we had last year, so I definitely hope to do better in the race. There is no reason I can't become the tenth winner."

The VGX Brake Pads Formula Ford 2000 Classic, Presented by 'Money Talks' will be held August 8th and 9th at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course as part of the Miller 200 CART weekend.

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Dana LaLiberte                                                 jmfangio@umich.edu
Dana LaLiberte Motorsports           http://www-personal.umich.edu/~jmfangio
Ann Arbor, Michigan                                       Kalamazoo, Michigan
Car #98                                         US FF2000 National Championship

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