Long Beach: Genoa Racing quaifying report

Two Young Californians Carry Banner For Genoa Racing at Long Beach LONG BEACH, Calif., April 16 - Two young stars from California will handle the driving duties for Genoa Racing in Saturday's endurance sports car race at the Toyota Grand Prix of...

Two Young Californians Carry Banner For Genoa Racing at Long Beach

LONG BEACH, Calif., April 16 - Two young stars from California will handle the driving duties for Genoa Racing in Saturday's endurance sports car race at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, the only street course event on the 2010 schedule of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron.

Tom Sutherland of Los Gatos, who turned 21 on April 3, and 22-year-old J.R. Hildebrand of Sausalito will share the driving duties in the Zionsville, Ind.-based team's LMPC car in Saturday's race. It is slated to start at 4:15 p.m. Pacific time and will be broadcast at 8 p.m. Eastern time on SPEED.

With a distance of 1 hour and 40 minutes, the race is the series' shortest one of the year.

It comes on the heels of the longest race of the year, last month's Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. Genoa Racing ended up third in the LMPC class in that event after a penalty originally imposed on one of its rivals was rescinded.

It's a clean slate on Saturday, however, and the team is looking forward to the race. On Friday evening Hildebrand qualified the red No. 36 Oreca in third place in the LMPC class and tenth overall in the 36-car field. His fastest lap in the qualifying session was timed in 1:18.186, which was only 0.913 off the time Christophe Bouchut ran to win the class pole. Hildebrand's fastest lap was the ninth of 11 he ran in the qualifying session.

Both Sutherland and Hildebrand have raced here previously. Hildebrand dominated the Firestone Indy Lights race here last year enroute to that series' championship, while Sutherland drove an Atlantic car and a Panoz GT car around the 1.968-mile, 11-turn temporary street course in previous years.

"There are a lot of cars in this race and traffic is going to be bad," said Sutherland, who is sponsored by ClickAway. "There is no margin for error here. We're going to have to be very patient tomorrow."

-source: genoa racing

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Series ALMS
Drivers Christophe Bouchut , Tom Sutherland