Prodrive Ferrari aim for a hat-trick Following the victories of the Care Racing supported Prodrive Ferrari team in the GTS category at the last two rounds of the American Le Mans Series (Road America and Laguna Seca), the team moves on to...
Prodrive Ferrari aim for a hat-trick
Following the victories of the Care Racing supported Prodrive Ferrari team in the GTS category at the last two rounds of the American Le Mans Series (Road America and Laguna Seca), the team moves on to Florida to face the altogether different challenges of the temporary 1.2 mile Miami street circuit.
Set in the Downtown area of Miami and around the scenic Biscayne Bay area, the sports cars of the American Le Mans Series and the Champ Cars of CART will share the billing in a unique "dual headline" Grand Prix Americas event.
The two scarlet Ferrari 550 Maranellos, built and prepared by British-based motorsport and automotive technology specialists, Prodrive, will once again be battling head-to-head with the world's best sports cars, including North America's Corvettes. Having endured a testing race last year, which featured five full course caution periods, the team is hoping for a smoother run but acknowledges that the hot, tight and twisty track will not suit the 6-litre, V12 engined cars as well as others in the Series.
Car #80 will feature a revised driver line-up for this coming weekend as Dane Jan Magnussen has a prior racing commitment in Denmark. David Brabham's new partner will be Briton Darren Turner who, with Veloqx Motorsport, joined with the team at Sebring and Le Mans earlier this year. Peter Kox of the Netherlands and Czech Tomas Enge in car #88 will be hoping to improve on their GTS podium placing from 2002, by at least two steps!
Tomas Enge: "It should be another exciting fight! The track has changed slightly since last year's race but that makes it the same for everybody - I do not feel that it will be an advantage or disadvantage for us. We finished behind the 'Vettes last year but we lost one lap due to the safety car otherwise it was close fight. We feel that the new aero package introduced at Laguna Seca was definitely a step forward, and hopefully it will work in our favour also at Miami. However, I expect a much closer fight with our main rivals. We have two strong car crews and have shown that we cooperate in an extremely good way. There is only one thing which I do not like in Miami - very hot weather coupled with high humidity. It will be a really demanding race and physical fitness will play a role in the outcome."
Darren Turner: "I am really excited about driving the Ferrari 550 again as I really enjoyed Sebring and Le Mans in the car. It's nice to be working with Prodrive again and I am really looking forward to driving alongside David Brabham, which will be a great experience. As far as Miami is concerned, it will be my first proper street race but - as the track is different to last year - I won't be the only one feeling my way around."
The two-hour, 45-minute sports car endurance race will start at 4.00 pm (EDT) on Saturday, 27th September, thus finishing in twilight, and will be televised live by SPEED Channel in the US, and on Eurosport in Europe at 8.00pm (Central European Time), October 4, 2003. Live coverage of qualifying and the race by the American Le Mans Series Radio Web can be heard online at www.americanlemans.com.