Road America: Drayson Racing preview

Drayson Racing Readies for America's Le Mans: Road America ELKHART LAKE, WI, USA - Ask Drayson Racing drivers Paul Drayson (Gloucestershire, UK/London) and Jonny Cocker (Guisborough, Yorks, UK) the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) track which most...

Drayson Racing Readies for America's Le Mans: Road America

ELKHART LAKE, WI, USA - Ask Drayson Racing drivers Paul Drayson (Gloucestershire, UK/London) and Jonny Cocker (Guisborough, Yorks, UK) the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) track which most reminds them of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the answer will be Road America. The Elkhart Lake, WI facility is the closest track in length and identity to the catalyst of the sport anywhere in North America, perhaps the world. Whilst the two-hour and 45-minute race scheduled for 22 August is but a tenth of the distance of the French classic and the track's 4.048-mile/6.51Km, 14-turn layout is over half the length shorter, the seventh of the nine round Le Mans Prototype (LMP) championship links the two events in the minds of the drivers of the No.8 Drayson Racing Lola Coupe with Judd Power.

On the heels of the team's first career, overall ALMS pole position at Mid-Ohio; Drayson Racing is eager to score its first-ever LMP victory this weekend in Elkhart Lake. Whilst a collision with a GTC-class car ended the team's pole run last week, Drayson Racing has impressed the paddock since returning from France in June. From that time the team has scored its highest-ever ALMS starting position (pole, Mid-Ohio), finish (second, Miller Motorsports Park) and led significant portions of the races at Miller and Lime Rock.

Like the other tracks it has excelled at this season, Road America is a perfect stage for Paul Drayson and Jonny Cocker to make a mark. Road America was a favourite of both British drivers when they first teamed together here in a GT car, 2008. The track complements the driving style of the pair, as each likes an ultra-quick circuit. Road America, with its long-straightaways cutting through the dense forest of America's upper, mid-west, will also give the second-generation, cellulosic E85-powered V10 a chance to come to full song. Based on the lap times the Dale White (Bozeman, MT, USA)-managed team has been able to post at all of the recent ALMS events, it again suggests the No.8 will challenge for overall superiority this Sunday.

With only three events remaining in the ALMS season, the United Kingdom-based organisation is fourth in the LMP Team Championship. Cocker fell one spot in the Drivers Championship to sixth after Mid-Ohio, whilst Drayson dropped two to 11th after the collision with the GTC car. Team driver Emanuele Pirro (Rome) is eighth having started three events thus far on the year.

Live timing and scoring of all sessions can be found at www.americanlemans.com. The live radio call by Radio Le Mans can be heard at www.radiolemans.com and on Sirius Channel 127 and XM Channel 242. Television coverage of Sunday's feature can be seen live in North America on SPEED at 3:05 pm (ET). UK and European viewers can view the broadcast on tape delay, 29 August on MotorsTV at 17:00 (UK)/18:00 (CET).

Quotes

Paul Drayson\\Owner/Driver: "Racing at Road America in an LMP car will be incredibly exciting. It is such a fast, long circuit cut into the hillside with big corners and lots of elevation changes so we will certainly feel the power and grip of the Lola-Judd here. In places it feels a lot like Le Mans, especially as you race through the trees on the run down to 'Canada Corner'. We know we have the speed and the car will work really well here. I intend to bounce back after the torrid stint I had at Mid-Ohio and have a great race: just like we did at Le Mans in June."

Jonny Cocker\\Driver: "Road America is an awesome circuit. The run down through the trees feels very much like Le Mans. Personally, it's one of my favourite circuits in the US and I can't wait to feel the LMP1 Lola round there! I really believe we made a crucial step forward last weekend at Mid-Ohio taking the first pole position for the team. We're going to do everything we can to return to that dominating performance here at Road America. I'm very much looking forward to racing this weekend."

Dale White\\Team Manager: "Road America will be a great track for Drayson Racing. We have shown speed in the car everywhere we have gone and both Paul and Jonny really love Road America. Like Mid-Ohio this is a driver's track so we have a good chance to replicate what we did in qualifying at Ohio but also improve on race day. I am really looking forward to these final three races on the ALMS schedule."

-source: drayson racing

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Paul Drayson , Jonny Cocker , Emanuele Pirro
Teams HART