JAIME MELO POSTS FASTEST GT2 TIME IN PRACTICE AT ALMS SALT LAKE CITY TRACK IN RISI COMPETIZIONE FERRARI F430GT Salt Lake City, Utah - It didn't take long for the Risi Competizione F430GT team to feel at home on the newest track on the American...
JAIME MELO POSTS FASTEST GT2 TIME IN PRACTICE AT ALMS SALT LAKE CITY TRACK IN RISI COMPETIZIONE FERRARI F430GT
Salt Lake City, Utah - It didn't take long for the Risi Competizione F430GT team to feel at home on the newest track on the American Le Mans Series circuit this year. Driver Jaime Melo, back with the team along with driving partner Mika Salo, and behind the wheel after missing the Lime Rock race, turned in the fastest GT2 lap at the new, 4.5 mile Miller Motorsports Park race track in Salt Lake City with a 2.46.050 lap time, setting the lap record for GT2 on this just-opened track.
That lap was 1.4 seconds better than class championship leader Johannes van Overbeek and teammate Wolf Henzler could manage in one of the Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsches. Third in class was the Lime Rock winner, the Petersen Motorsports/White Lightning Race Porsche driven by Patrick Long and Jorg Bergmeister.
Asked about the speed of the Ferrari, Team Manager David Sims said simply "The car is quick and it's been quick at every track we've been on this season. The Michelin tires are working quite well and we're glad to have Mika Salo and Jaime Melo back with us. The circuit is demanding and there's a steep learning curve for all teams. We expect the other GT2 cars to get quicker with each track session, so holding the advantage we have now is going to be a challenge for the team."
The Utah Grand Prix, to be run on tomorrow (Saturday, July 15th), will be the first racing event held at the newly constructed Miller Motorsports Park. The circuit is one of the longest on the ALMS schedule at 4.5 miles; it features 24 turns and a 3,500 foot straightaway. Not only does the new track present a unique set of challenges for teams and drivers, it has also mandated a very comprehensive television production plan. To televise the race effectively, CBS is deploying 20 cameras around the circuit; this contrasts with 12 cameras used to telecast the 12 Hours of Sebring race and the 13 cameras used at Road America. By contrast, the race at Lime Rock required only 9 cameras. CBS will in addition use a helicopter mounted camera, two cameras in pit lane, three cameras on the fastest part of the straightway, and six in-car cameras. From a coverage point of view, fans should get an excellent vantage point throughout the race.
The competition in the GT2 class for the Risi Competizione F430GT is fierce; a different team has won each of the first four races. The Risi Competizione Ferrari has been one of the fastest cars-if not the fastest-in the class this year.
The inaugural Utah Grand Prix will start at 6:00PM local time, and end two hours and forty-five minutes (2:45) later. The race will be televised on CBS on July 16th, at 12PM (MST) (Check local listing for time and channel).