Watkins Glen II: AIM Autosport preview

AIM Autosport is ready to complete the challenge of back-to-back Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series races, this week on the 2.45-mile Watkins Glen International road course. The team hopes to carry the momentum of its race-leading performance in ...

AIM Autosport is ready to complete the challenge of back-to-back Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series races, this week on the 2.45-mile Watkins Glen International road course. The team hopes to carry the momentum of its race-leading performance in Montreal last week across the border to the New York track. Burt Frisselle of Lynchburg, Va., will team with Mark Wilkins of Toronto in the No. 61 Riley Mk XI powered by Lexus.

Frisselle finished second in the 2004 race, so he's hoping his experience and the team's recent success will be a strong combination -- especially if forecast rain hits during the Friday evening race.

"It was a strategy call," he said of his podium performance. "We switched from wet tires to dry tires before anybody else except the eventual winner, and he and I ran away from the entire field. It's one of my greatest memories in a DP car, so hopefully we'll make all the right calls again.

"I have a lot of experience at that track in the rain. The one very challenging part is taking care of your rain tires and keeping them underneath you. If it rains, you've got to be very conscious of not destroying your tires. Obviously, I have experience of when to make the call to go to slicks. The track dries out quicker than most, with drainage and concrete patches, so if you make that call early, you can definitely reap rewards."

Gold Power

AIM's Daytona Prototype is gold inside and out. The car's striking black-and-gold livery reflects the support of sponsors Exchange Traded Gold, Barrick Gold Corporation, RBC Financial Group and Telus' Mike Network. Inside, the car's electronic components are protected by gold contacts and connectors.

Gold is one of the most effective conductors of electricity and heat, so it transports electrical signals efficiently and moves heat away from critical components. Gold does not corrode or tarnish, so it is much more reliable than other metals in electronic applications. Gold is also inert, so it does not react when it comes into contact with other substances.

Gold is used at the highest levels of automotive production. In fact, the engine bays in the three-seat McLaren F1 supercars, built in the 1990s, were lined with gold leaf to reflect heat. An F1 won les 24 Heures du Mans in 1995.

Crew Call

What does the AIM crew do for fun? Race, of course! Team manager Don Sobering races radio-controlled cars. Chief mechanic Kevin O'Reilly chases speed on snowmobiles, while fabricator Jason Willis enjoys the warmer pursuit of dirt biking. Gearbox mechanic Dan Hingley and his family provide track rescue services at major Ontario races.

-credit: aimautosport.com

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Burt Frisselle