VICI RACING - GRAND PRIX OF MOSPORT PREVIEW Chicago, Illinois - VICI Racing and development partner Kumho Tires are shaping up to their next challenge together as the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) is heading north of the border this ...
VICI RACING - GRAND PRIX OF MOSPORT PREVIEW
Chicago, Illinois - VICI Racing and development partner Kumho Tires are shaping up to their next challenge together as the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) is heading north of the border this week for the Grand Prix of Mosport, at the Mosport International Raceway, Ontario, Canada, for the eighth round of the 2008 series. Following a strong eighth place finish just over a week ago in the 4-hour race at Road America, the team will be back in action at the historic race circuit with its #18 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR which will be sporting a brand-new black, white and red colour scheme.
The Florida-based team will be looking to build on the performance turned in by the Hughes Telematics, Hughes Network Systems, LuxuryMotors.com and Wempe-supported car last time out at Road America where Dutch youngsters Nicky and Francesco Pastorelli were joined by German Marc Basseng, the trio finishing solidly in the tough, classic sports car race, keeping up an excellent record that has seen the VICI Racing Porsches classified amongst the finishers in every race they have started in this, the team's inaugural year in ALMS.
VICI Racing and Kumho Tires have teamed up this year to run a new tire development program in the ALMS, and it's been a fast moving season for a project which has been carried out in the full racing glare. Fresh out of the box and with most staff members unfamiliar with each other's names at Sebring, the team far exceeded its own expectations during the famous 12- hour marathon as the new #5 car ran in a podium position for over four hours, and eventually clinched a sixth place finish after overcoming a catalogue of late race dramas that were outside the team's control. However, motor racing brings highs and lows, and at St. Petersburg (round 2) the team came crashing back to earth and went home early after a practice accident which caused damage that couldn't be repaired at the track. Following that setback a huge dose of professionalism and hard work was called for to make the grid at Long Beach (round 3) a fortnight later, and another helping of points was a perfect reward for many late nights. Round four in Utah saw the line up double as the #18 car joined the #5 in the paddock and getting both cars to the finish in the points sent the team into the early summer break continuing to make steady progress. The team skipped round 5 at Lime Rock to concentrate on technical developments, before another points finish at Mid-Ohio (round 6) beckoned and again at Road America (round 7) last weekend.
Following a brief week-and-a-half long break, the ALMS series moves on to another classic North American race track this weekend for the second of three races scheduled for this month, with the Grand Prix of Mosport ready to pose a fresh set of challenges for VICI Racing and Kumho Tires' ambitious tire development program. Deriving its name from an abbreviation of "motor sport", the Mosport International Raceway is 2.46-mile, 10-turn permanent course, which hosted F1 races between 1967 and 1977; it is today owned by the Panoz Motor Sports Group and features a track layout that is virtually unchanged since it opened in 1961. The 2008 Grand Prix of Mosport looks set to be another demanding test for the team and the tire program.
The intensive program of American Le Mans Series (ALMS) races taking place this month far north of VICI Racing's, Miami, Florida HQ has seen team partner LuxuryMotors.com playing an important role in the major logistical challenge being faced. This busy summer schedule kicked off last weekend at Road America (7-9 Aug) and is now moving on to Mosport (22-24 Aug) before a week later heading to Detroit (29-30 Aug).
In the days prior to the race at Road America the team shipped its trucks, equipment and key components of the workshop infrastructure northwards to LuxuryMotors.com's headquarters in Chicago. Using the firm's one-of-a kind indoor Distribution Facility is proving invaluable as the team now makes the final preparations for the trek to Mosport. LuxuryMotors.com houses nearly 400 of their high-end vehicles indoors at this unique warehouse facility but has made working space available for the VICI Racing crew to use.
Roland Wall: "Mosport poses its own unique challenge, for everybody - teams, drivers and tires, and I'm particularly looking forward to the new development compounds that Kumho are bringing to this race. We have done much evaluation in recent races, the Kumho personnel are working very hard, and hopefully the new tires we will try this week will reflect this. Our race at Road America went pretty well and I'm very pleased we can now double stint the tires and they hold up well as this gives us greatly increased strategy options. At Mid-Ohio and Road America we made tangible progress, so now we have to follow this up at Mosport. Mosport has a pretty long and fast main straight but the RSR's set up here will be tuned more towards a higher downforce direction as there are a lot of corners, mostly though they are quick. We will probably be running quite a stiff set up, while the track is easy on brakes."
Tim Bumps, Team Manager, VICI Racing: "It's been a pretty busy run up to Mosport already, but I'm especially pleased with the huge support that LuxuryMotors.com has given us, it's made our job a whole lot easier. The move north to Chicago was accomplished very efficiently by the crew, and I can safely say that this is the best temporary base I have ever had to work from in my motor racing career. LuxuryMotors.com has made sure everything has gone smoothly and it is giving us the perfect environment to prepare for the race. The crew have all worked very hard over the last weeks, the new members have integrated very well, and the team is becoming a smooth, efficient operation. We can now look forward to a good race in Canada this weekend and hopefully bring the car to the flag intact and in a good position."
Jason Myers, Motorsport Development Director, Kumho Tires: "VICI Racing has shown that hard work and preparation get results on-track. Road America was a challenge as we struggled to find front grip in early practice sessions, however the track came to us and the end result was that we could double stint the tires when needed. Mosport is another fast circuit that we had a fourth place finish with BK Motorsports in 2007. This is the time of year where the development comes together for a solid package. Kumho will have three new options for Mosport which gives Roland some latitude to work on set-up for the best results."
-credit: vici racing