RISI AIMING TO REPEAT PAST MOSPORT GLORIES Houston, Tx. -- August 19, 2008. The Risi Competizione team returns to the fast and challenging Mosport track this week with a single aim -- to repeat the great American Le Mans Series success that...
RISI AIMING TO REPEAT PAST MOSPORT GLORIES
Houston, Tx. -- August 19, 2008. The Risi Competizione team returns to the fast and challenging Mosport track this week with a single aim -- to repeat the great American Le Mans Series success that has been achieved by the Houston-based squad in Canada in the last two years.
Only one Risi Ferrari 430 GT car will be entered for this round due to a scheduling adjustment which affects the drivers for the #61 car. Both cars are expected to be back on track for next weekend's Detroit round of the series.
Mosport has proved to be a happy hunting ground for Risi, and both Melo and Salo will be aiming to capture their first GT2 ALMS victory of the 2008 season -- especially after coming so close at Road America two weeks ago. The team is testing today (Tuesday) in preparation for this weekend's 2 hour 45 minute race. While good weather is currently predicted, a close eye will be kept on the radar as Ontario has so far experienced its wettest summer for nearly a century.
As Risi's Technical Director, Rick Mayer, notes: "The track surface is bumpy in an undulating way, but not harsh and abrupt like a street circuit. The apex patches will change the grip throughout the corner. The ideal line will depend on where the grip is, and how bad last winter was; rain will further complicate the ideal grip line."
For Brazilian Melo, last year's Canadian round was faultless. He not only claimed pole position and set a new track record, but he went on to lead every lap in the race (in class) and break the Fastest Lap record during the race by nearly a second before going on to claim victory with his Finnish co-Champion.
Mika Salo returns to Mosport with one advantage over last year -- he doesn't have to learn the track! It is, however, the challenges of the 2.45 mile track that appeal to one of the series most experienced drivers.
"Mosport is a really fast circuit," he says, "and also very difficult with both high speed corners and some blind corners to make life complicated! Our car was really good here last year and we raced quite easily in the end. It's the type of circuit where you need to have very good car balance to trust the handling in the high speed corners.
"It took a while to learn the track last year because of the blind corners and the high speeds, most of them are 4th or 5th gear corners. The walls are very close so there's no room for error; it's challenging, which is why I like it.
"The traffic will be difficult because of the speed of the prototypes. There's obviously the speed difference at all tracks, but here they will have much more down force so they'll be able to carry their speed through the corners better than we can."