Updated Ford GT for Robertson Racing in Utah 06/07/2010 - The Larry H. Miller Dealerships Utah Grand Prix makes up round four of this season's American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron, where Robertson Racing are eyeing another strong...
Updated Ford GT for Robertson Racing in Utah
06/07/2010 - The Larry H. Miller Dealerships Utah Grand Prix makes up round four of this season's American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron, where Robertson Racing are eyeing another strong finish.
It's been over a month since the last ALMS race with sportscar racing's jewel in the crown - the Le Mans 24 Hours - taking centre stage. The Atlanta squad's Ford GT didn't travel to France, but Robertson Racing has scarcely stood still since its last outing at Laguna Seca.
The biggest news concerns a change of engine supplier, with an Elan powerplant making its first appearance in the Series since 2007. The fresh V8 motor has already been tested at Mid-Ohio and Road Atlanta and is expected to offer a step forward in performance.
Any gain in lap time this weekend can also be attributed to ongoing aerodynamic development. The Robertson Racing Ford GT saw the inside of a windtunnel twice last month with fresh parts being tried on both occasions in an attempt to gain further data and real-world improvement on-track. A day's tyre testing is also expected to help.
That's not to say that this weekend will be anything less than tough. One of America's newest facilities, Miller Motorsports Park is a harsh environment in which to go racing. Encircled by mountains, the 3.04 mile Perimeter Circuit is often dusty owing to its flat geography and high winds, making it difficult for teams to find the ultimate-set-up.
Nevertheless, Team manager Andrew 'H' Smith is hopeful that the GT will be well suited to the challenges of Salt Lake City after a recent test there.
"It's been a crazy month or so! We've not had any time off at all. We ran the new engine at Salt Lake with some new settings after Long Beach and it went really well, so we're optimistic of moving forward. We're definitely faster horsepower and mph-wise, but when you're not running with everyone else it's always difficult to tell. The windtunnel development has also helped and should improve the car's downforce.
"As for Salt Lake City, we're certainly moving in the right direction. I think it's going to be extremely hot there but the track should suit us, especially with the recent aero stuff we've learned. It'll beat the cars up pretty bad with the abrasion, while the wind can come in at a moment's notice, bringing with it sand and dust, which changes the whole circuit."
For Robertson Racing, changing engine partners was a case of going back to the future.
"We were looking for a more personal commitment from our engine partner which is why we chose Elan. We know the guys from running the Panoz in 2007 so it was a logical step. Roush Yates has been fantastic over the last three seasons but we felt it was time for a change and parted ways on very good terms."
All three of Robertson Racing's regular drivers - David Robertson, David Murry and Andrea Robertson - will contest the 2 hour 45 minute enduro.
In another exciting move forward, the team has stepped up its marketing efforts in planning for an exciting 2011 season with the signing of TopSpeed Management to represent their sponsorship interests within the series.
"We are thrilled to be a part of this exciting privateer racing team, and believe there is a tremendous opportunity for brands to align themselves with what the team is planning for the future," said Brian Marks, CEO of TopSpeed Management. "The American Le Mans Series offers a perfect place to build strong brand equity, develop B2B opportunities and entertain clients within today's fast-paced world of motorsport!"
-source: robertson racing