JMB Racing USA Gained Confidence and Experience in Canada Miramar, Florida, May 25, 2004: The Six Heures du Circuit Mont Tremblant was the fourth round of the 2004 Grand American Rolex Sports car Series and only the second race of the season...
JMB Racing USA Gained Confidence and Experience in Canada
Miramar, Florida, May 25, 2004: The Six Heures du Circuit Mont Tremblant was the fourth round of the 2004 Grand American Rolex Sports car Series and only the second race of the season for JMB Racing USA.
Following the heavy damages incurred at the Rolex 24 which forced the team to miss the next two races, the newly rebuilt Ferrari 360 Modena GT JMB Racing USA #11 Lineltex/The Inn at English Harbour Antigua/Antigua Slipway Ferrari delivered an anticipated competitive performance in Canada last weekend and despite the fact that the car did not finish the race due to a minor oil pressure problem, the JMB Racing USA team did an exceptional job and definitely gained confidence and experience for the upcoming races including the anticipated six-hour Sahlen's Sports Car Grand Prix at Watkins Glen scheduled for June 18-20, 2004.
Iradj Alexander, co-driver of the JMB Racing USA #11 Ferrari 360 Modena GT with Edi Gay and Maurizio Mediani qualified the car fifth in the GT class on Saturday, not too far behind the fastest cars in class. "The most important fact of the weekend" declared Iradj Alexander after the race "is that we started the weekend five seconds behind the leading GT cars and finished the weekend only five-tenths behind! I believe this is a fantastic example of our team's capability and what our car can do in the next events," added a motivated Alexander.
Like the three drivers, the JMB Racing USA crew discovered the Canadian track on Thursday for the first practice. "This is our first real race this year" said Alexander. "At the Rolex 24 at Daytona we were only able to race for 3 hours and Edi and Maurizio never got the chance to drive, because of the accident. Considering that we received the car from Europe only two weeks ago and that our team was not able to test prior to the race because of the tight schedule, and adding to that our track inexperience, I can say that this is a great racing team and I am really proud to be racing with these guys."
On Sunday Iradj Alexander drove the car in the first stint from fifth to third in class and impressed more than one expert by his talent and competitiveness. Just before the end of the first hour of racing, Iradj was battling with the second BMW for second position in the GT class. Considering that the two BMWs were in a class of their own, this was not small achievement on the part of Iradj and the team!
Maurizio Mediani took the #11 Ferrari from Alexander and also delivered a perfect piece of driving. "For me this race was truly an experience because it is my first real race in North America, in the Rolex Series and also my first race in a Ferrari 360 GT" announced Mediani, winner of the 2004 inaugural Italian GT Championship a month ago with JMB Racing Europe. "The Ferrari 360 is different from the 550 Maranello but I like it a lot. I still have to learn the car but I am confident that if our team stays at this level of performance, we are going to win races soon" Mediani announced with his engaging Italian accent.
Edi Gay drove the JMB Racing USA Ferrari in the third stint. "I really enjoyed being able to drive the car for the first time in a racing situation" commented Edi. "I started racing a year ago in the Maserati Trofeo in Europe but this is different. I have to admit that the Rolex Series is very competitive and I am proud to be racing there. I still have to learn from the car and I am eager to get back in the car soon to make more progress because nothing replaces driving in racing conditions" said Edi Gay after the event.
In summary, the JMB Racing USA team learned a lot last weekend and even if the car was not able to finish the race, the team did a fantastic job accruing the experience and confidence it needs to succeed in the series.