NA-F2000: April 4, Team news plus Archangel announces test for F2000 driver

Team & Driver News April 4, 2001 NEXT RACE Sun Automotive 200 Phoenix International Raceway April 18-21, 2001 Archangel Announces Test for U.S. F2000 Driver in SRPII Archangel Motorsport Services, the defending SportsRacing Prototype II ...

Team & Driver News
April 4, 2001

Sun Automotive 200
Phoenix International Raceway
April 18-21, 2001

Archangel Announces Test for U.S. F2000 Driver in SRPII
Archangel Motorsport Services, the defending SportsRacing Prototype II Team Champion, has announced it will offer a free test drive to a U.S. F2000 National Championship driver in 2001. The test, which will be conducted in one of the team's Nissan Lolas, will be offered to the driver who completes the most laps during the 2001 U.S. F2000 season.

"We've had great success with F2000 graduates in the car," said Michael Johnson, Archangel Motorsport Services owner and a former U.S. F2000 driver. "In order to succeed in endurance racing you need to be both quick and consistent. That is why we are offering the test to the driver who completes the most laps."

Archangel dominated Grand-Am's SportsRacing Prototype II class in its inaugural season, giving U.S. F2000 graduates Ryan Hampton and Larry Oberto the driver championship. As a reward for winning the SRPII title, the 2000 SportsRacing Prototype Team Champion, Dyson Racing, offered both Hampton and Oberto a test.

"One of the reasons we want to do this is because Dyson gave the opportunity to our drivers last year," said Johnson. "As a former U.S. F2000 team, we have always believed in the quality of the series, and we want to help drivers move up the motorsports ladder."

Grand-Am Cup Advisory Board Elected
The Grand American Road Racing Association announced the results of the Grand-Am Cup Advisory Board elections. The Advisory Board will include: John Kohler representing the SGS class; Bob Aines representing the GS class; Andy Linder representing the ST class; and Bill Fenton representing the C2K class. The Grand-Am Cup Advisory Board was elected by Grand-Am Cup team entrants and is designed to act as a liaison between the teams and Grand-Am Cup staff for long-range planning.

Speedvision to Feature Rolex Series in April
The Rolex Sports Car Series will be featured on Speedvision several times during the month of April, including a live broadcast of the Sun Automotive 200 from Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday, April 21. A two-hour highlights show from the Rolex 24 At Daytona will air on Saturday, April 7 at 8 p.m. EDT (5 p.m. PDT). The Nextel 250, which was run at Homestead-Miami Speedway in early March, will be re-broadcast on Sunday, April 8 at 1 p.m. EDT (10 a.m. PDT). This month's premier Rolex Series broadcast will come Saturday, April 21 at 10 p.m. EDT (7 p.m. PDT) with a live broadcast of Sun Automotive 200. The Phoenix race will be the first race under the lights since the series kicked off its season in Daytona with the Rolex 24. The Sun Automotive 200 will also be re-broadcast the following day, Sunday, April 22, at noon EDT (9 a.m. PDT). The Rolex Sports Car Series broadcast schedule can be found online at

"Frankenstein" Alive for Phoenix Grand-Am Cup Race
Ever since the announced expansion of Villaconn Motorsports for the 2001 Grand-Am Cup, the team has been touting their three-car effort. At Daytona and Homestead, however, only two BMWs appeared. While the team's red and yellow cars were racing, Villaconn's race shop crew was back in Philadelphia trying to breathe life into the team's black Coupe. The challenge with the number #38 BMW (now affectionately known as "Frankenstein" for having been built from the parts of various dead BMWs) was beginning with a bare shell instead of converting an existing Coupe. Simply put, the computers weren't talking to each other and "Frankenstein" wouldn't start.

That's all been corrected and the team is happy to report that "Frankenstein" is indeed alive. For the Phoenix round of the Grand-Am Cup, fans will see the #38 BMW Z3 Coupe of Gregory White and Ray Shaffer joining the #36 Z3 Coupe of Al Villamil and Matt Connolly and the #34 BMW of Homestead runners-up, Jeff Trask and Bransen Patch. Now the team is concentrating on finishing the details on their third challenger with plans to test the car before sending the transporter to Arizona. "Every once in a while I'll see Frankie sitting in the corner of the shop and I'll fire it up just to be sure I'm not dreaming," comments Team Manager Ricky Marrero. "Paranoid? Naah!"

Sun Automotive 200 Entries Up from Last Year
The number of entries into the Rolex Sports Car Series Sun Automotive 200 has increased from last year's race. Currently 28 teams have pre-entered for the April 21 night race at Phoenix International Raceway, with additional late entries expected. Only 23 cars competed in last year's race. The Sun Automotive 200 is the second Rolex Sports Car Series race this season to see an increase in the number of entries. to Offer Live Chat with Saleen Drivers
The Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series will offer a live chat on its web site - - with Fordahl Motorsports' drivers Chris Bingham and Ron Johnson on Wednesday, April 11 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. ET. Bingham and Johnson piloted their Saleen S7R to Victory Lane in the GTS class at the Nextel 250 last month and hope to make it two-in-a-row at the Sun Automotive 200 in Phoenix, April 21. Bingham and Johnson will answer fans' questions regarding the Saleen S7R, one of the more unique cars found in the GTS class.

Archangel Share Drivers Podium with Crew Chief
Archangel Motorsport Services selects a member of its crew at each race to join the drivers on the podium in receiving the team's trophy. Crew Chief Jason Dunken received the honor at the Nextel 250 last month where the Archangel #22 car took the top prize in the SRPII class. Dunken was selected after rebuilding the #22 Nissan Lola, tub included, in only three weeks and helping position it to capture the class victory at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The #22 car had been involved in a severe accident at the Rolex 24 At Daytona only weeks before the Nextel 250.

More information on the Rolex Sports Car Series and Grand-Am Cup is available online at


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About this article
Series Grand-Am , Other open wheel
Drivers Chris Bingham , Ryan Hampton , Bransen Patch , Larry Oberto , Matt Connolly , Bill Fenton , Ron Johnson
Teams Dyson Racing