INDIANAPOLIS (August 13, 2001) -- One of the most successful American road racing teams in history, Dyson Racing, will join the American Le Mans Series for several upcoming races. With co-drivers James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger, the Dyson ...
INDIANAPOLIS (August 13, 2001) -- One of the most successful American road racing teams in history, Dyson Racing, will join the American Le Mans Series for several upcoming races.
With co-drivers James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger, the Dyson team will compete in the GT3 Grand Prix at Mosport on Aug. 19 at Mosport International Raceway near Toronto, and in the series event on Aug. 25 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. The team will compete in the LMP 900 (Prototype) class with a Riley & Scott Mk3C-Lincoln, a 2001-spec machine that the team debuted earlier this year in the 12 Hours at Sebring.
"It's definitely going to be a huge undertaking to race against the factory teams (in the ALMS)," said Leitzinger, a resident of State College, Penn. "The team's mission for these races is to size up the competition and the car that we have and see where we are.
"We know that the new car isn't quite fast enough yet," he said. "We've done some testing, but we need real-world experience with it to see what improvements we need. We're going into these races with our eyes wide open."
Leitzinger applauded the recent technical rule change by the ALMS designed to benefit privateer Prototype racing teams such as Dyson Racing. The rule change allowed non-factory Prototype teams to compete with larger air restrictors, producing an increase in horsepower.
"That's a big incentive for teams like us to join in," he said. "No one wants to have any special breaks with the factory teams; you want to take it to them on equal footing. But at this point in the development of our car, it's a good incentive."
The Dyson team is no stranger to the American Le Mans Series, having won the inaugural series championship in 1999 with driver Elliott Forbes-Robinson. The team did not compete in any series events last year, but returned to Sebring this year. Following the Mid-Ohio race, the team also plans to compete in the Audi Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta on Oct. 6.
Weaver and Leitzinger have been the most successful duo this year in the Grand American road racing series, winning four times and holding a lock on the top two spots in the driver's championship. Leitzinger also had a successful side-excursion in June when he joined the new Bentley team and finished third overall in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Both the Mosport and Mid-Ohio races will be televised live in the United States by NBC Sports, with the broadcasts to start at 2 p.m. (EDT) on their respective dates. In addition, the two races will have live coverage from the American Le Mans Series Radio Web online at www.americanlemans.com.