Alex Job Racing has Disappointing Sebring Sebring, Florida - Alex Job Racing finished the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in a disappointing thirteenth and fourteenth place in GT2 this evening in round one of the American Le Mans Series. The...
Alex Job Racing has Disappointing Sebring
Sebring, Florida - Alex Job Racing finished the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in a disappointing thirteenth and fourteenth place in GT2 this evening in round one of the American Le Mans Series.
The day started very positive with both Alex Job Racing cars running strong with the number 23 AJR car leading and the number 24 car in sixth place. Things began to unravel on lap 20 when Randy Pobst, driving the 24/BellMicroproducts/ProVest/Alex Job Racing/Porsche 911 GT3, in sixth place began to hear transmission noise. Soon after third gear had gone, causing his lap times to increase. The team took the Porsche to the paddock and had to rebuild the transmission. ALMS series rules no longer allow the replacement of the transmission; teams have to rebuild the one that started the race in the car. This repair took about two hours. Upon returning to the track on lap 107, the transmission problems persisted with a loss of fifth gear. The car could not be repaired a second time to put it back on the track to complete 70% of race distance to score points so the car was withdrawn from the race.
The number 23/mail2web.com/Hyatt/Alex Job Racing/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR was started by defending GT2 series champion Timo Bernhard. Bernhard took the lead in class on lap three from his third place starting position. He then handed over to season long teammate Romain Dumas on lap 37 and the French driver continued to lead the GT2 field. Sascha Maasen assumed the seat early in the afternoon only to suffer an engine problem that ended the day for the AJR 23 entry just four hours and 107 laps into the race.
Timo Bernhard, #23 Alex Job Racing/ mail2web.com/Hyatt/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, "It has been a long time since I have had an engine related problem in a Porsche. The car was running great, I took the lead early and we had a very good pace set. This will make the championship an uphill battle for Romain and me, but we have nine races to come back. Leaving Sebring with zero points is a tough start to the season."
Romain Dumas, #23 Alex Job Racing/ mail2web.com/Hyatt/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: "This is crazy. We were leading by one lap and not pushing the car too hard. This is a very unusual failure for the team and for these cars. This is a bad start to our championship. Timo and I will have additional pressure to score points the rest of the season."
Sascha Maassen, #23 Alex Job Racing/ mail2web.com/Hyatt/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: "I was running great. The car was very good, handling perfect and then I began to lose power, some white smoke and then it stopped. This is hard to take after winning four times in a row here. The team does a great job to prepare these cars and Porsche Motorsport supplies an excellent drivetrain."
Randy Pobst, #24 Alex Job Racing/Bell Microproducts/ProVest/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: "I was running good, careful to steer clear of any incidents. Around lap 20 I began to hear a noise when the car was in third gear. Soon after I lost third gear all together. Without third at this track your times drop by about seven seconds. It was too early to give up that kind of time so we had to bring it in and fix it. This is a tough start to our seson, but we will be ready for Road Atlanta."
Ian Baas, #24 Alex Job Racing/Bell Microproducts/ProVest/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: "Disappointing way to start the season. The weekend was going great up until the race. I hope this takes care of our bad luck for the year. The professionalism of the team and the whole experience this weekend has been great. I was able to get acclimated to the car and get a feel for this type of racing. It makes me look forward to Road Atlanta."
Brian Cunningham, #24 Alex Job Racing/Bell Microproducts/ProVest/Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: "I think I did about one race lap. It was just a tough day, not an Alex Job Racing Sebring by any stretch. The crew worked their tales off to the very end. When they were told that we couldn't make the 70% rule they were dejected."
Alex Job, team owner: "This is the first time since 2000 that we have not finished an event and the first time in our history of running two cars that we did not finish at least one. We were running strong in the lead for the first quarter of the race with the 23 car. The 24 had transmission problems from the 20th lap. This is a tough one to give up, it will be difficult to make up the Sebring bonus points. We will have to start our Sebring winning streak over in 2006."
The next event for Alex Job Racing will be April 17th at Road Atlanta.