Flying Lizard Wins GT at Mid-Ohio June 27, 2004--Lexington, OH-- Johannes van Overbeek and Darren Law drove the Flying Lizard Motorsports ...
Flying Lizard Wins GT at Mid-Ohio
June 27, 2004--Lexington, OH-- Johannes van Overbeek and Darren Law drove the Flying Lizard Motorsports #45 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR to a clean GT-class win in today's American Le Mans Series (ALMS) race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. This is the first win for the new team in just their second ALMS race.
Van Overbeek, of San Francisco, crossed the finish line more than 30 seconds ahead of the defending class champions, Alex Job Racing, following a late pit stop after nearly running out of fuel.
Darren Law, of Phoenix, was the team's starting driver. He methodically moved the metallic silver and red Porsche from its fourth place on the starting grid to the second place on lap 51 when the field was slowed by a full course caution period, approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes into the race. That situation proved to be race's turning point.
During the subsequent lightning fast pit stop and driver change, #45 moved from second to first place. The Flying Lizard crew, directed by crew chief Tommy Sadler and chief strategist Thomas Blam, managed the driver change, added four new Michelin tires and a full tank of gas, beating the leader up to that point, the #23 Alex Job car, out of the pits by six seconds.
"The competition in the GT class of the ALMS has always been strong and is even tougher this year. We went to school on our Sebring experience in March. The team has worked extremely hard to get ready for what is shaping up to be a very competitive and entertaining season," said van Overbeek. "That work really paid off in the pits. That's where we won: entering the pits we were in second, leaving we were in first."
Darren Law, qualifier and co-driver of the winning car, started the race from fourth in GT and steadily moved up to second in a very strong drive. "The car was great. My stint went just as I had hoped: smooth, consistent, and with no on-track incidents. Winning against a team like Alex Job is a memorable accomplishment."
The #44 Flying Lizard Porsche, driven by Lonnie Pechnik of Pacific Grove, Calif. and Seth Neiman of Burlingame, Calif., started seventh in class in a 911 GT3 RS, after an accident on Friday destroyed their regular GT3 RSR.
Neiman and the #50 Panoz collided just 23 laps into the race. By the end of the pit stop to repair a broken wheel and bodywork, the car had dropped to ninth place in the GT class. Pechnik's stint, starting about half way through the race, was incident-free and consistently quick. "I'm so proud of the team. Their ability to bounce back from adversity and give us a strong car in these circumstances is inspiring," added Pechnik.