Sebring: Friday practice report

DYSON POSTS QUICKEST PRACTICE TIME FRIDAY FOR MOBIL 1 TWELVE HOURS OF SEBRING Sebring, Fla. - The Dyson Racing team looks like it wants to crash Audi's party at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. A pair of Lola EX257 AERs flexed their muscles...

DYSON POSTS QUICKEST PRACTICE TIME FRIDAY FOR MOBIL 1 TWELVE HOURS OF SEBRING

Sebring, Fla. - The Dyson Racing team looks like it wants to crash Audi's party at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. A pair of Lola EX257 AERs flexed their muscles during Friday's sole practice session, signaling what should be an electric race Saturday in the season opener for the American Le Mans Series.

The No. 20 entry of Guy Smith and Chris Dyson set the pace with a lap of 1:49.114, a little more than 0.1 seconds faster than the No. 16 car of James Weaver, Butch Leitzinger and Andy Wallace. The two Dyson cars bested both ADT Champion Audi R8s, which had posted the fastest laps in each previous session.

The No. 37 Telesis Intersport Racing Lola B05/40 AER posted the fastest time in LMP2 at 1:51.508. Gregor Fisken, Jon Field and Duncan Dayton were fifth-fastest overall. The entry was four seconds quicker than the No. 27 Kruse Motorsport Courage C-65 Judd of Phil Bennett, Ian Mitchell and Harold Primat.

A Corvette posted the best time in GT1, but it was the No. 5 Pacific Coast Motorsports Corvette C5-R of Alex Figge, Ryan Dalziel and Dave Empringham that turned a lap of 1:57.223. That bested the favored No. 3 and No. 4 Corvette Racing C6-Rs by more than half a second.

The No. 31 Petersen Motorsports/White Lightning Racing Porsche 911 GT3 RSR of Lucas Luhr, Patrick Long and Jorg Bergmeister turned the quickest lap at 2:04.037.

The green flag for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring is scheduled to drop at 10:45 a.m. EST Saturday.

FOUNDER'S CUP

The Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring marks the first race in the inaugural Founder's Cup. The competition recognizes the accomplishments of American Le Mans Series drivers who "are a foundation of the series, and whose participation embodies the 'Learn by Doing' spirit of the Founder."

The Cup is named in honor or ALMS founder Don Panoz. To be eligible for the championship drivers must apply to IMSA prior to the first event where the driver wishes to accumulate points and IMSA will make the sole determination of eligibility. IMSA will base its decision on a number of criteria. Among them, the driver:

1. Does not now and has not recently made his/her primary living though motorsports.

2. Has not in the last two years won an ALMS driver's class championship, LMES class championship, 24 Hours of Le Mans class or FIA GT class championship.

3. Has not won another professional series championship in the last two years.

4. Provides a significant portion of the funding for the entry.

IMSA also may use its own discretion to determine other criteria.

Drivers will accumulate points at each event. At the end of the season, the top driver will receive the Founders Cup, an all-expenses-paid trip for two to the 24 Hours of Le Mans and a table for 10 at the season-ending ALMS banquet.

The inaugural Founder's Cup will be presented at the end of each race, before driver podium presentations.

LET'S TALK

A quartet of Tech Talks are scheduled for Saturday at Sebring.

The Corvette Corral will hold three sessions trackside at Turn 17: noon, 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. Miracle Motorsports will hold a session of its own, featuring Kumho tires, at 8:30 a.m. at the team's paddock.

MORE MASERATI

The Maserati Corse MC12, entered in GT1, has to carry an extra 130 pounds of weight to counter an aerodynamic advantage, IMSA has ruled. As part of IMSA's process of monitoring the Maserati, the car will have sensors to gather feedback on how it is performing in relation to other GT1 cars.

GIRLS, GIRLS, GIRLS

Pirelli Tires will have two autograph sessions Saturday with a pair of its models at ALMS merchandise displays at Sebring. The first is scheduled for 1 p.m. at the Midway of the Spring Brake Party Zone on the infield. The second is set for 4 p.m. at the merchandise area in the pit paddock.

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Andy Wallace , Duncan Dayton , Ryan Dalziel , Guy Smith , Butch Leitzinger , James Weaver , Jon Field , Lucas Luhr , Jörg Bergmeister , Harold Primat , Patrick Long , Alex Figge , Don Panoz , Gregor Fisken , Ian Mitchell , Phil Bennett , Chris Dyson
Teams Corvette Racing , Dyson Racing