March 12, 2002, Road Atlanta, GA - KnightHawk Racing will begin it's contention for the American Le Mans Series 2002 LMP 675 Championship by competing in the 50th Annual Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, presented by Dodge, on Saturday, March 16, ...
March 12, 2002, Road Atlanta, GA - KnightHawk Racing will begin it's contention for the American Le Mans Series 2002 LMP 675 Championship by competing in the 50th Annual Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, presented by Dodge, on Saturday, March 16, 2002.
The 12 Hours of Sebring is America's oldest sportscar race and the first round of the 2002 American Le Mans ten-race championship season. This world-renown sportscar classic tests man and machine on a 3.7-mile, 17 turn road circuit at Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Florida.
KnightHawk Racing, the lone LMP 675 entrant in last year's event, and understandable class winner, returns this year to face a remarkable ten entries in the relatively new classification. KnightHawk was one of the inaugural teams in the LMP 675 class that was instituted for the 2001 season.
The team will field it's #11 DNTLworks MG Lola 675 LMP, with co-owners/drivers Steve Knight and Mel Hawkins sharing cockpit duties and will be joined by Ireland's impressive Jonny Kane.
"At last year's 12 Hours we had to race against ourselves -- being the sole class entrant," says co-owner/driver Knight. "I'm really happy that the class has grown from us having no in-class competitors at last year's race to ten this year! I got involved in racing because I love to compete and now, with the turnout this year, I look forward to the competition -- and I welcome the new teams!"
This year's race will also mark the first appearance in the American Le Mans Series of the team's new MG Lola 675 LMP. The MG Lola is the first purpose built racecar for the LMP 675 class. Although a factory MG Lola contested last year's 24 Hours of Le Mans, this race at Sebring will mark the new car's first race on American soil. It also announces the return of the much-missed MG factory to today's sportscar family. Sebring will also mark the car's first appearance in KnightHawk traditional silver, orange and black livery.
"The MG Lola has most certainly tested very well, and all indicators are that it should be a serious contender for the class win," said co-owner/driver Hawkins. "But, taking nothing away from the testing performance of the very well engineered MG Lola, a fast car alone does not make for a championship-winning season. It requires a comprehensively solid season-long effort by the drivers and the team, requiring excellent preparation and set-up, flawless pit stops and the skill and capability of the drivers. As a team we've worked very hard to rise to the challenge, and we look forward to Sebring for our first test," added Hawkins.
The team will face a week of final preparation, consisting of test days and multiple practice sessions with qualifying on Thursday, March 14. The race is a timed 12-hour event that will begin at 10:30am EST on Saturday, March 16.
The Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, presented by Dodge, is the longest-running sportscar endurance race in the United States, having held its first race in 1952. The Sebring International Raceway was built on the site of a World War II military training airfield. The list of previous winners is a virtual "Who's Who" of international racing history.
Flag-to-flag live television coverage can be seen on the Speed Channel beginning at 10:00am EST on Saturday. The American Le Mans Series Radio Web at www.americanlemans.com will provide up-to-the-minute scoring and live reporting.
For additional information on KnightHawk Racing, including driver pictures and bios, pictures of the new KnightHawk MG Lola -- and updates during the Sebring race -- please log on to www.knighthawkracing.com.