STRONG TESTING START FOR PATRON HIGHCROFT'S CANADIAN ASSAULT BOWMANVILLE, ON, CANADA, Friday, August 28, 2009: Patron Highcroft Racing's preparations for this weekend's annual Canadian visit began well at the historic Mosport International...
STRONG TESTING START FOR PATRON HIGHCROFT'S CANADIAN ASSAULT
BOWMANVILLE, ON, CANADA, Friday, August 28, 2009: Patron Highcroft Racing's preparations for this weekend's annual Canadian visit began well at the historic Mosport International Raceway today with Scott Sharp and David Brabham only .043 seconds from the fastest time of the day.
With threatening skies above, Scott Sharp was first aboard the team's Acura ARX-02a prototype - beginning a solid 90 minute session where the team completed 47 laps around the former home of the Canadian Formula 1 Grand Prix.
With the team focussing on race preparations and completing important tasks including running in a new gearbox for the race weekend, the times continued to fall.
In the final laps of the day, Brabham eventually brought the time down to 1 minute, 5.513 seconds - only .043 of a second off championship rivals de Ferran Motorsports.
Patron Bee With regulation changes slowing both the LMP1 and LMP2 prototypes in 2009, today's time aboard the Patron Highcroft LMP1 Acura was actually slower than last year's qualifying performance in the LMP2 car - 1 minute, 4.603 seconds.
Fresh from victory in the last round of the championship at Road America, Patron Highcroft Racing will be looking to take back-to-back Mosport victories this weekend.
Sharp and Brabham took their final 2008 win at the Canadian circuit last year.
With seven rounds of the championship now completed, the American/Australian combination lead the 2009 LMP1 championship by 13 points.
SCOTT SHARP "Conditions were a bit dodgy early because it was cold and it started to sprinkle some rain on different parts of the track. "It was changing each lap and it was challenging to push too hard putting some temperature in the tires. "We managed to learn some things and made some pretty good changes. "Towards the end of the session it dried out and we kept making good improvements. It would have been nice if it was 80 degrees and sunny but it was the same track that everyone had to deal with. "I was a bit concerned early in the session that we might not be able to achieve much, but it ended up a very productive day. "We managed to complete a number of things we had on our 'to do' list and are in good shape for tomorrow."
DAVID BRABHAM "I'm very pleased with how the session went because we were very focussed on our race preparations. "We made a few adjustments, but the weather was changing a bit. "Once I got in the car it took a few laps to get back up to speed but the car started to hook up quite well towards the end. "We found a nice little sweet spot in the set-up that the car liked and we now have a very good platform to start from tomorrow. "This car is quite different than the P2 car from last year. At the moment I am having a big lift through turn two where we have some understeer whereas the P2 car was flat through there. "Turn 1 and turn 8 are also pretty similar. There is certainly quite a bit more speed to come out of the car and we are heading in the right direction so I am very happy with how the day went."