Laguna Seca: BAM! qualifying report

slippery run BAM! (British American Motorsport) will start the final American Le Mans Series race of the season from fifth on the GT grid. Lucas Luhr qualified the No. 43 YES Network Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with a lap of one minute 26.844 seconds on...

slippery run

BAM! (British American Motorsport) will start the final American Le Mans Series race of the season from fifth on the GT grid. Lucas Luhr qualified the No. 43 YES Network Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with a lap of one minute 26.844 seconds on the 2.238-mile Laguna Seca Raceway road course. He was disappointed with the run:

"We're fifth on the grid. That's not exactly what I wanted, but somehow I couldn't get the tires to work properly on the qualifying run. I was just sliding around with no grip, especially the front. I think we have an issue with our car that somehow the chassis doesn't bring the tires to work like they should. The whole year has been difficult for us in qualifying, but in the race we are pretty good. We are always really competitive and sometimes quicker than the others, so I just hope it turns out like that tomorrow and we can have a good race."

Leo Hindery, Jr., Luhr and Sascha Maassen will share driving duty in the race on Saturday.

futures

In response to paddock rumors, Leo Hindery acknowledged the U.S. presidential election could affect his future plans. As a senior advisor to candidate John Kerry, Hindery may find himself working in Washington after the Nov. 2 election, which could preclude racing.

"For the past several years, I've tried to develop a life that's a combination of career, philanthropy and politics. But in the last year, almost all of my emphasis has been on politics and AIDS," he said. "The country is right now in the grips, I think, of the most important presidential election, certainly in my lifetime. It's hard to predict three weeks ahead of that election what I'll be doing next year, but it may mean that I will have to cut back dramatically my ALMS participation. If I do, it will be with the fondest memories of my life and some of the best friendships I've ever had. If I do come back, I'll do so with this wonderful team called BAM! and we'll see if we can't have even more fun than we've had the past several years, which have been magical."

tire talk

The ALMS paddock is preparing for the final race of the 2004 season, but Michelin is already setting up for 2005. Michelin's ALMS operations manager, Jerry Rinaldo, said development is constant, so new tire solutions can be quickly prepared.

"Looking ahead, we'll be doing some off-season testing, mostly in Europe," he said. "We may do some testing at Sebring [International Raceway] prior to the first race, but that will be with tires that have already been tested Europe, to make sure they work well here. It's an ongoing process, we review the results after each race and at the end of the season. We can turn over, with the gambit of testing, in about three or four months."

-bam!-

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Series ALMS
Drivers Sascha Maassen , Lucas Luhr , Leo Hindery , John Kerr