KUNO WITTMER WINS HIS THIRD HONDA/MICHELIN SERIES RACE AT MOSPORT MOSPORT, September 4, 2005. - Kuno Wittmer won his third Honda/Michelin Challenge Series race of the 2005 season in Round Seven held Sunday at the Mosport Grand Prix.
KUNO WITTMER WINS HIS THIRD HONDA/MICHELIN SERIES RACE AT MOSPORT
MOSPORT, September 4, 2005. - Kuno Wittmer won his third Honda/Michelin Challenge Series race of the 2005 season in Round Seven held Sunday at the Mosport Grand Prix. Starting in second place, the Honda de Sigi Autosport driver led the 18-lap race twice for a total of eight laps to cross the finish line 0.273 seconds ahead of new series points leader Steven Laporte. Laporte led his Lombardi Racing Honda Civic DX Coupe from the pole for the first four laps before being passed by Kuno Wittmer on lap 5. Laporte retook the lead two laps later for side-by-side racing for the next six ones before Kuno led the final six laps to win the race.
''I missed the start because I tried to anticipate it,'' said Kuno Wittmer, who won his second consecutive race and became the first to win three races in 2005. ''This race was fun with a lot of side-by-side racing with Steven (Laporte). We trade paint a bit, but it was clean racing. I'm glad Honda de Sigi AutoSport broke the ice with the first win of the season at Mosport.''
Laporte was also happy about the outcome, although he would have preferred a win rather than finishing in second place. During the race, Laporte set a new race best lap record by pacing the 3.957-kilometre track in 1 minute 42.177 seconds, erasing the old mark of 1:42.333.
''A win would have been nice, but second place in the race gives me the top spot in the points standings, so that's okay,'' said Laporte who now leads by two over Kuno Wittmer. ''Kuno tried to pass me at the end of the long back straight at each of the first four laps before he finally did it on lap five. After that, it was a tight battle on each lap until the finish. At the end, I did not try anything foolish as I knew that second place was good enough to bring me back into first place.''
Frederick Lelièvre kept the pace with the two front runners to finish third, only 1.273 seconds behind race winner Kuno Wittmer, but a little more than 10 seconds ahead of fourth place finisher, Nick Wittmer. Fifth place went to Didier Schraenen followed by rookie Tyler Givogue of Ottawa and Kris Rams of Toronto. It was Givogue's best finish of the season.
''I made a mistake at the start by going too large into turn one and I overcooked my tires,'' said Lelièvre, who has three podium finishes in the last four races. ''After that, I could keep up with the leaders, but I could not really get into their battle.'' In the provisional points standing after seven rounds, Steven Laporte is back on top with 208 points, two more than race winner Kuno Wittmer. Nick Wittmer went from first to third with a total of 205, still within sticking distance of Laporte with two races to go. Didier Schraenen is still fourth with 192 points, followed by Lelièvre who has moved up one position to fifth with 179 points.
Honda/Michelin Challenge Series drivers will have a few weeks off before returning to action on the weekend of September 25 at picturesque Circuit Mont-Tremblant.