Utah: B-K Motorsports preview

B-K Motorsports Rockets into Salt Lake City for Utah Grand Prix Tooele, Utah- After claiming two consecutive top-10 overall finishes, B-K Motorsports heads to Salt Lake City this weekend for the Larry H. Miller Dealerships Utah Grand Prix ...

B-K Motorsports Rockets into Salt Lake City for Utah Grand Prix

Tooele, Utah- After claiming two consecutive top-10 overall finishes, B-K Motorsports heads to Salt Lake City this weekend for the Larry H. Miller Dealerships Utah Grand Prix presented by The Grand and Little America Hotels. The fourth round of the American Le Mans Series season will see the No. 8 BP Lola B07/46 Mazda compete on the 15-turn, 3.048-mile outer course layout at Miller Motorsports Park.

Drivers Ben Devlin and Gerardo Bonilla are looking forward to getting back to a natural terrain road course after soldiering through the streets of St. Petersburg and Long Beach in their Yokohama-shod LMP2 race car.

"Our first natural terrain course of the year will be as much fun as any track we race," Bonilla said. "If anything, the variety is a fresh experience for our minds, but its still the same great challenge as any track configuration. The Mazda MZR-R engine is well suited to this kind of track as well."

Last year, Devlin and the team enjoyed an impressive run at Miller, showing the strengths of the turbocharged Mazda MZR-R engine in the high altitude. Devlin got the car up to third in class early on in the race and had a great battle with other LMP2 cars.

"To show that the car had great potential last year was very satisfying," Devlin said. "It was a real morale booster for the team. We want to try to do the same again. There's no reason why we can't do the same again. We know the car has got the potential to do it. The team has come such a long way. We just need to now get all the pieces in the right place and hopefully get a great finish and get on the podium."

Despite the new challenge of the new outer course layout, B-K Motorsports is well prepared for the task at hand. The team conducted a test at the new layout last month prior to Long Beach, finding it well suited to their race car.

"The test went very well for us," Bonilla said. "We learned quite a lot about our new Yokohama tires and chassis setup. Ben [Devlin] and I have both driven at Miller before, but never on the outer loop. This configuration is actually a lot of fun. It's still 3 miles long and has the best and fastest corners. Our BP car is well suited to this new layout."

Devlin notes the increased development of the Mazda engine and relationship with Yokohama will help to bring another solid result this weekend.

"I think the track is going to suit us and obviously testing went very well," Devlin said. "It builds us hope to go to the race this weekend. The car is strong. It really suits this type of circuit -- very high speed, very flat, very smooth. The altitude can let the turbos fan out a little bit more than the normally aspirated engines. It all builds to hopefully a good weekend."

Before making their way to Miller Motorsports Park, Devlin, Bonilla and the team's Lola B07/46 Mazda made a pit stop at a promotion for the newly released film Speed Racer. The Jordan Commons Megaplex 17 in the Salt Lake City suburb of Midvale was transformed into a high-octane event that featured a karting track set up in the parking lot of the theater. Fans bought ticket packages that included a Speed Racer screening, lunch and karting session. Devlin and Bonilla were on hand to offer pointers on karting, sign autographs and pose for photographs.

B-K Motorsports and Yokohama will continue its promotion of Speed Racer this weekend as the BP-sponsored car will once again carry Speed Racer logos. Bonilla, Devlin and team members will also be sporting Speed Racer-designed shirts and driving suits.

The Larry H. Miller Dealerships Utah Grand Prix presented by The Grand and Little America Hotels is set for Sunday, May 18 from Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah. The green flag is scheduled for 1 p.m. MT with live television coverage on SPEED. Live radio coverage will be available on XM Satellite Radio Channel 144 and American Le Mans Radio at americanlemans.com, which also will feature IMSA's Live Timing & Scoring.

-credit: bkm

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Ben Devlin , Gerardo Bonilla