Michlen heads west to Laguna Seca, Las vegas

(Braselton, GA) - Coming off its 15th consecutive American Le Mans Series (ALMS) victory last weekend at the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, Michelin heads west for the final two U.S.-based races of the 2000 ALMS season. The first stop...

(Braselton, GA) - Coming off its 15th consecutive American Le Mans Series (ALMS) victory last weekend at the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, Michelin heads west for the final two U.S.-based races of the 2000 ALMS season. The first stop is Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, Calif., on Oct. 15 and the second is Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Oct. 29.

"Laguna Seca is a track that rewards rhythm," said Michelin Racing Manager Jerry Rinaldo of the 2.238-mile, 11-turn natural terrain road course. "Because the track features several fast, sweeping corners, Laguna Seca is a tire engineer's dream because the temperature in the tires is much more consistent than it is when there are several tight corners. Therefore, the tires give very good and consistent feedback to the drivers and allow them to know exactly where their limit is. However, when a car puts a wheel off at Laguna Seca, a lot of sand tends to be thrown onto the track, and that makes it very slippery."

Top Teams Riding On Michelin Tires At Laguna Seca in 2000
In the prototype category at Laguna Seca, the Sebring, Le Mans and Petit Le Mans-winning Audi team will be riding on Michelin tires, as will the 1999 Le Mans-winning BMW team plus the Panoz and Olive Garden Rafanelli teams. In GTS, Team Oreca will field a pair of Michelin-shod Dodge Vipers, which not only scored a third consecutive Le Mans GTS victory in June, but also won the 24 Hours of Daytona outright in February. Alex Job Racing, Dick Barbour Racing and Mike Colucci Racing will field Porsches fitted with Michelin tires in the GT category.

Michelin Dominated 1999 ALMS Event at Laguna Seca
At Laguna Seca in 1999, Michelin cars led all 121 laps, scored the overall victory (J.J. Lehto and Steve Soper in a BMW V12 LMR), recorded the fastest qualifying lap (Eric Bernard and David Brabham in a Panoz LMP-1 Roadster S) and race lap (Bernard on Lap 90) in addition to scoring the GTS victory (Olivier Beretta and Karl Wendlinger in a Dodge Viper).

Michelin Scores ALMS Tire Championship
After dominating the ALMS throughout the 2000 season, Michelin secured the Tire Championship for the prototype category at Portland in early September. To date, Michelin has scored 240 points while Yokohama has 103. Goodyear, Pirelli and Avon have also scored points in the ALMS prototype tire championship. Unlike other major racing series such as CART, NASCAR and the IRL, the ALMS features head-to-head competition among several major tire manufacturers.

Michelin also leads the Tire Championship in the GTS and GT categories by significant margins.

Michelin Scores Big Wins In 2000
Michelin won the four biggest sportscar endurance races in the world this season. A Michelin-shod Dodge Viper won the 24 Hours of Daytona while Audis fitted with Michelin tires won the 12 Hours of Sebring, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans.

Michelin has won every 2000 ALMS race run thus far, including Sebring (Audi), Charlotte (BMW), Silverstone (BMW), Germany (Panoz), Sears Point (Audi), Mosport (Audi), Texas (Audi), Portland (Audi) and Petit Le Mans (Audi).

Michelin Leads The Way
So far this season, Michelin teams have led 1,628 of 1,633 laps in ALMS competition. Additionally, Michelin cars led every one of the 368 laps at Le Mans.

So far this season, Michelin teams have not only won every ALMS race, but have also led at the start by qualifying on the pole for each race.

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Series ALMS
Drivers David Brabham , J.J. Lehto , Karl Wendlinger , Dick Barbour , Olivier Beretta , Steve Soper , Alex Job
Teams Alex Job Racing