Intersport Racing Third In Class at Utah - 5th Consecutive Podium Detroit -- The ...
Intersport Racing Third In Class at Utah - 5th Consecutive Podium
Detroit -- The #37 Intersport Racing Very Berry Exotics Judd Powered Creation LMP1 car continued to improve as the 5th round of the American Le Mans Series 2007 Championship season. This was the series' second visit to Miller Motorsport Park in Salt Lake City, Utah. The longest circuit on the 12 race calendar, Miller Motorsport Park provide an excellent opportunity for Intersport to continue the development and forward movement of their Kumho tired, Judd Powered Creation chassis.
The team suffered a setback early in the week when the replacement for a cracked differential cover didn't arrive on time. Drivers drivers Clint and Jon Field and Richard Berry were forced to miss the Thursday practice session.
By race day, Intersport was enjoying their biggest improvement of the season. The large Utah track somewhat overshadowed the gain, though it should be noted, Intersport is definitely closing the gap on the competition.
Team owner, Clint Field, expressed is pleasure with the progress of the team's development program and was happy with the performance of a new Kumho tire.
"I was really happy with how the new tires performed," said Clint. "The stability throughout the whole stint was really a lot better than the previous generation tire. We're happy with that and hopefully we can build on that and get a little more competitive. I felt more competitive than we've ever been, which is a good sign."
Richard Berry lined up second on the grid in LMP1. As the field came into turn one almost six cars wide, Berry's safest route turned out to be an off-course excursion.
"I missed my braking zone on the first corner," said Berry. "I just went in a little too deep. Once back on course, though, I got into a good rhythm and started moving up through the field."
In spite of the mishap, always one of the most upbeat teams in the paddock, the Intersport crew added a little fun to the mix with a rivalry between Clint and is father, Jon.
Jon took over the car after the first stop and put the Creation through its paces. Ultimately he found his way up into third spot and then turned the car over to Clint. It was Crew Chief, Brian Alder that instigated the challenge informing Clint that Jon still had the team's fastest lap of the race. Rising to the challenge, Clint did several laps within a few thousands of a second of Jon, but even following a pit stop for fuel and a fresh set of tires he never would best Jon's time.
"He got two shots at my best lap with two sets of fresh Kumhos," said Jon as Clint lapped the track. Following the race, Clint conceded to his dad's fast time.
"It's fun," said Clint with a grin. "We have a little bet going on every race to see who's fastest. I had to try and get it, but I got held up in traffic a couple of times and it ruined my lap."
Kumho's teams have several tests planned before the next race at Lime Rock on July 7. Intersport will test at Road America on June 11 and 12; and Mid-Ohio on June 27.
"We'll have some new tires at a couple of these tests," said Kumho motorsports manager Rudy Consolacion. "We made good progress with a new version of our LMP1 tire at Salt Lake, and these tests will give us an opportunity to make some more gains. We've got a wider front tire to try on our LMP2 cars, as well as some new compounds. With three teams running on our tires, we should get some good feedback that will enable us to progress even more quickly."
The American Le Mans Series will enjoy a short break as the attention of the endurance racing community will focus it's attention on the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Twelve teams from the American Le Mans Series, will participate in the 75th running of the most important race in the world and the ultimate test of driver and technology.
The 75th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans is scheduled for 3 p.m. CET (9 a.m. ET) on Saturday, June 16 from the Circuit de la Sarthe. SPEED will provide 17.5 hours of coverage in North America starting at 8:30 a.m. on June 16. MotorsTV will air week-long coverage throughout Europe. Live coverage can be found on Radio Le Mans through americanlemans.com.
The next race for the American Le Mans Series is the American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix, set for 3 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 7 at Lime Rock Park. CBS Sports will televise the race at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 8. American Le Mans Radio will have live coverage at americanlemans.com, which also will feature IMSA Live Timing & Scoring.