ROUND EIGHT, AMERICAN LE MANS SERIES AUDI PRESENT PETIT LE MANS, ROAD ATLANTA, GA. Saturday, 6th October 2001 RACE REPORT A superb exhibition of racing at its best was put on today by sportscar star drivers David Brabham and Jan Magnussen as...
ROUND EIGHT, AMERICAN LE MANS SERIES
AUDI PRESENT PETIT LE MANS, ROAD ATLANTA, GA.
Saturday, 6th October 2001
A superb exhibition of racing at its best was put on today by sportscar star drivers David Brabham and Jan Magnussen as they fought their way through from the very back of the field to finish 6th in the LMP900 class and 10th overall.
The Panoz LMP-1 #50 had led the race and was again pushing for the lead when a clash with a GTS car caused extensive accident damage and put it out of contention for any chance of victory.
The Panoz mechanics did a superb job to repair the car and put it back on the track in just 41 minutes. Both Brabham and Magnussen thereafter provided some of the most exciting racing and overtaking moves of the race in their quest to move up the leaderbo ard.
David Brabham said after his last stint in the car: "As I am standing here, it is the last time I will drive the car in competition this year. We've had a good year with the LMP-1 and it's a shame it's ended in this way. Everyone on the team has done a fantastic job this year and we've had a couple of wins we didn't expect. We have always been in contention and I now look forward to making amends next year and winning the Championship."
Jan Magnussen, who crossed the finish line in #50, said: "It's such a shame about what happened [in the race] as we had a good race car. Every time we were out there we were really competitive but just 30 laps down! We showed in the second half of the s eason that, with a bit more development, we will be contenders for the Championship. We really lived up to the name of the side of the car -- Spirit of America."
The car of Klaus Graf and Franck Lagorce did not have such a lengthy opportunity to show its pace. It retired on lap 22 with engine failure. Graf had started the race, and Lagorce did not drive today.
Despite heavy rain this morning, the race was run in dry conditions throughout. There were multiple caution periods throughout and the rate of attrition was high.
The 1,000 mile event, which ended at 9.15 pm (some 45 minutes before the 10 Hours), was won by new American Le Mans Series Champions Audi Sport North America and Panoz Motor Sports takes this opportunity to congratulate them on their success and sportsmans hip throughout the season.