Wins, consistent finishes put Kristensen, Capello on top. BRASELTON, Ga. (August 6, 2002) -- Winning races and finishing consistently well have placed Audi Sport North America teammates Tom Kristensen and Rinaldo "Dindo" Capello on top of the ...
Wins, consistent finishes put Kristensen, Capello on top.
BRASELTON, Ga. (August 6, 2002) -- Winning races and finishing consistently well have placed Audi Sport North America teammates Tom Kristensen and Rinaldo "Dindo" Capello on top of the driver championship standings in the American Le Mans Series.
Denmark's Kristensen has accumulated 139 points to lead the Prototype 900 class standings after six of 10 rounds of the series for the 2002 season. Capello, from Italy, is only two points behind with 137.
The two co-drove to victory in the most recent American Le Mans Series races at Trois-Rivieres, Qc., Canada, on Sunday, their second win in the last three races. In the four races they have driven together as teammates, they have won twice and finished second twice.
The two are remarkably close despite having vastly different experiences in the first two races of the season, when they drove separate cars. Capello was part of the winning team in the season-opening 12 Hours of Sebring, while Kristensen finished fifth. In the second race of the season, Kristensen finished second while driving for Champion Racing, while Capello earned only 12 points as his car finished 14th after being involved in two accidents during the event at Infineon (Sears Point) Raceway.
Despite those differences in results, Kristensen is still only two points ahead of Capello based on the two bonus points he has earned for winning poles at Infineon Raceway and at Road America. Capello has not earned a pole this season in ALMS competition.
Though they are ahead now, neither driver is counting out the rest of the challengers. With four races to go in last year's season, Kristensen and Capello were also on top of the standings, only to endure a string of problems over the final four events. At the same time, the Audi Sport North America team car driven by Emanuele Pirro and Frank Biela went on a tear, winning three of the last four races and cementing the driving title for Pirro.
Biela and Pirro are in position to strike again, as Biela is third in the standings, 16 points behind Kristensen, and Pirro is one point behind Biela in fourth. Johnny Herbert, driver for the Champion Audi team, is fifth with 120, only 19 behind Kristensen.
The next race for the American Le Mans Series is the mail2web.com Grand Prix of Mosport on Sunday, August 18, at Mosport International Raceway near Toronto. Biela and Pirro are the defending race champions.
The final three events will be at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif., on Sept. 22; the Miami Downtown Street Circuit on Oct. 5; and Audi presents Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, the season finale on Oct. 12.