Laguna Seca - points battle spotlight

POINTS RACES HEATING UP WITH TWO EVENTS PRIOR TO MONTEREY SPORTS CAR CHAMPIONSHIPS American Le Mans Series Season Finale Will Decide Championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca October 20-22 MONTEREY, Calif. (August 31, 2006) -- What...

POINTS RACES HEATING UP WITH TWO EVENTS PRIOR TO MONTEREY SPORTS CAR CHAMPIONSHIPS

American Le Mans Series Season Finale Will Decide Championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca October 20-22

MONTEREY, Calif. (August 31, 2006) -- What better way to close out Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca's 50th season of racing than revisiting its roots with the eighth running of the Monterey Sports Car Championships featuring two classes of the ultra-tech Le Mans prototypes and a pair of production-based GT groups racing into the night October 20-22.

While Audi and drivers Rinaldo Capello and Alan McNish have all but wrapped up the LM P1 titles once again as the series heads to Mosport this weekend, team and individual championships in the other three ALMS groups will most likely be decided at the dry lake, adding to the drama and excitement of the storied track's lone event under the lights.

"Two years ago, we first held the American Le Mans Series season finale starting in the afternoon and racing into the darkness," said Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca CEO/General Manager Gill Campbell. "It was an instant hit. With division championships to again be decided here, this year's show promises to be bigger and better than ever."

Four classes of cars, LM P1 and P2 and GT 1 and 2, are all on track at the same time, which makes for continuous passing during the four-hour race. The special lighting system on the cars devised by the American Le Mans Series enables fans to distinguish among the four classes and track the leaders in each class.

Four points separate Sascha Maassen, Clint Field, Liz Halliday and Luca Luhr in the P2 championship chase heading into Mosport, which will be followed by the Petit Le Mans prior to heading to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca for championship finale weekend. Penske Motorsports has a 10-point lead over Intersport Racing in the team competition.

In GT1, Oliver Gavin and Olivier Beretta hold a 10-point lead over fellow Corvette drivers Johnny O'Connell and Ron Fellows with Aston Martin drivers Tomas Enge and Darren Turn only three more points behind.

In GT2, Johannes Van Overbeek, Jorg Bergmeister, Wolf Henzler and Patrick Long are all within14 points of the lead in the class dominated by Porsche. The German manufacturer doesn't have a lock yet on the title as Ferrari is still making noise.

In addition to the Saturday afternoon action provided by the American Le Mans Series, racing will also take place throughout the weekend with the SPEED World Challenge GT and Touring classes, Star Mazda Series, IMSA GT 3 Cup, and Super Stars of Super Karts.

Tickets and more information for the Monterey Sports Car Championships are available by calling (800) 327-SECA or on-line at www.laguna-seca.com.

-credit: mrls

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Series ALMS
Drivers Tomas Enge , Rinaldo Capello , Ron Fellows , Johnny O'Connell , Sascha Maassen , Oliver Gavin , Jörg Bergmeister , Clint Field , Olivier Beretta , Liz Halliday , Wolf Henzler