Road Atlanta: Guy Smith preview

Smith Aims To Bring Curtain Down In Style On 2010 Race Season * Yorkshireman looks to consolidate top-four American Le Mans Series championship finish * Former Le Mans winner aims for Petit Le Mans LM P2 class victory in ALMS ...

Smith Aims To Bring Curtain Down In Style On 2010 Race Season

* Yorkshireman looks to consolidate top-four American Le Mans Series championship finish

* Former Le Mans winner aims for Petit Le Mans LM P2 class victory in ALMS finale

Guy Smith brings the curtain down on his fifth full season in the American Le Mans Series when the Yorkshireman contests the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans race at Road Atlanta on Saturday (2 Oct).

The Beverley driver, who celebrated his 36th birthday earlier this month (12 Sep), scored his maiden "pole" and race win this season in a series the Briton first contested 10 years ago, competing for the American Dyson Racing team since 2005.

"It's been a pretty good year in the ALMS for me, having scored my first ALMS pole position at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca event and recording my first win too at Mid Ohio," reflected Guy. "There have been many good races this year and I still love the cut and thrust of racing in this North American-based sportscar endurance race championship.

"We made great gains with the Mazda engine this season and that has been very rewarding to see that development and, but for a couple of silly little niggling problems mid-season, we'd have been in the hunt for the LMP championship title."

Smith will be paired with regular co-driver, Chris Dyson, plus fellow Briton Andy Meyrick, in the Castrol Dyson Racing Lola Coupe Mazda for the 13th running of the Petit Le Mans at the fast and sweeping Road Atlanta track.

Guy continued: "I aim to get my head down and finish the season on a high and repeat the LM P2 class win that Dyson Racing achieved, albeit on the road due to us running advanced biofuel which was not recognized by the championship's organisers last year."

Smith, who has achieved an amazing 55 top-10 finishes in the 61 ALMS races he has contested, has a good record in the annual Petit Le Mans race but also some bitter sweet memories.

"Petit has always been a good race for Chris and I," confirmed Guy. "We finished second overall in 2005 and third overall in '07. It's a race that has a great atmosphere and buzz about it -- much like Le Mans or Sebring and there is always a great grid of cars and a huge crowd.

"My worst memory from Petit was in the 2006 race. I was challenging for the lead but suffered suspension failure which resulted in a hefty crash which was a huge shame as the car was running really well up until that point.

"My wife Alicia is expecting our third child which is due later this month [25 Oct] so that's another good reason to sign off from this year's race season in style."

Qualifying is staged on Friday (2050hr UK time) for grid positions on the 45-car grid, the largest ALMS race entry for over seven years, with the 1,000-mile race starting at 1615hr (UK time) on Saturday.

-source: guy smith PR

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Guy Smith , Chris Dyson , Andy Meyrick
Teams Dyson Racing