News from The Glen May 14, 1997 THREE FERRARI TEAMS GEAR UP FOR FIRST UNION SIX HOURS WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. -- Three Ferrari teams, each led by an Indy car veteran heading an international lineup, will be chasing the checkered flag at ...
News from The Glen May 14, 1997
THREE FERRARI TEAMS GEAR UP FOR FIRST UNION SIX HOURS
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. -- Three Ferrari teams, each led by an Indy car veteran heading an international lineup, will be chasing the checkered flag at Watkins Glen International in the May 30-June 1 running of the First Union Six Hours. Defending winner Gianpiero Moretti of Monza, Italy returns with the #30 Momo Ferrari 333SP Exxon World SportsCar. A new Italian sensation, Andrea Montermini, replaces '96 First Union Six Hours victor Massimiliano "Mad Max" Papis. Eliseo Salazar of Chile, the 1994 Glen winner, will team with Rob Morgan of Arkansas in the #43 Acxiom Ferrari 333SP, while Fermin Velez, a native of Barcelona, Spain and the 1995 SportsCar champion, will join Edurado Dibos of Peru in the #3 Visit Peru Ferrari 333SP. Moretti has a proven track record at the Glen. After teaming with Salazar to win a three-hour race at the Glen in 1994, Moretti and Wayne Taylor came back the following year to finish second behind the Dyson Ford of James Weaver and Butch Leitzinger. Last year, Papis spun twice in the final hour and was running third with less than 20 minutes remaining. He rallied to win, beating the Leitzinger/Weaver Ford. Montermini has big shoes to fill replacing Papis, but the he is up to the task. In his first two SportsCar appearances, at Sebring and Road Atlanta, Montermini collected the fastest race lap both times out in the Momo Ferrari. Montermini, who served as Ferrari Formula One test driver in 1990 and 1991, grew up in the town of Maranello, Italy, hometown to Ferrari, and always dreamed of racing the legendary automobile. "I am very happy to be driving a Ferrari for Moretti in the United States," said Montermini, who now calls Monte Carlo, Monaco, his home. "My relationship with Ferrari goes back many years and is very important to me -- being Italian and having driven for Ferrari in F-1." Montermini's racing background started in Italy in 1987, with his Formula 3 debut in 1988. In 1989 he collected a hometown victory at the Grand Prix of Rome. In 1990 he moved to F-3000 racing and started his association with Ferrari as their Formula One test driver. In 1993 he finished fourth at Detroit in his CART Indy car debut. In 1995, Montermini made his Formula One debut, finishing seventh in his inaugural race in Brazil. "I am looking forward to racing at such a historic circuit as Watkins Glen, especially in the Ferrari," Montermini said. "I hope we can repeat the success the team had here last year." The First Union Six Hours will be Salazar's first visit to the Glen since his 1994 victory. He now races Indy cars. Salazar finished fourth in the 1995 Indianapolis 500 and came back to place sixth last year. He will start next weekend's Indy 500 in the ninth position. Velez is no stranger to competition at the Glen. He joined Mauro Baldi in a second place finish in the 1995 three-hour race, racing in the Scandia Ferrari 333SP. He also finished fourth in the Camel Lights division in the 1992 Camel Continental, co-driving with Andy Evans. After winning Spain's go kart championship at a mere 17 years old, Velez moved into sports car racing and drove in Europe from 1986 to 1990. He earned World Endurance Championship Group C2 world titles in 1987 and 1989, and won his class at LeMans in 1987. Velez mixes his WSC racing schedule with the fledgling Indy Racing League. On the IRL circuit, he competes for Team Scandia in a new Dallara Oldsmobile. In the car's debut at Walt Disney World Speedway earlier this year, he garnered a ninth place finish. In 1996, Velez became the first Spanish driver to compete in the Indianapolis 500, finishing 21st after qualifying 28th. "The Indy 500 was the best thing that has happened to me in motor racing," said Velez. "I am very proud of that accomplishment." All three Ferrari teams will be among the favorites to win the pole position for the First Union Six Hours on qualifying day, Friday, June 30, which will set the front row for the SportsCar event. Tickets are still available for the First Union Six Hours. For additional information, call (607) 535-2481, or visit the official Watkins Glen International web site at http://www.theglen.com.
May 14, 1997
BRIAN REDMAN NAMED GRAND MARSHAL FOR FIRST UNION SIX HOURS OF THE GLEN
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. -- Brian Redman has been racing -- and winning -- at Watkins Glen International over the past three decades. But the personable British driver will have his first "guaranteed" trip to Victory Circle when he returns to the Glen as Grand Marshal of the May 30-June 1 First Union Six Hours. Redman will give the command to "Start your engines" at 11 a.m. on Sunday, June 1, to fire up a full field of Exxon World SportCars and Exxon Supreme GTs. Six hours and over 600 racing miles later, he'll be presenting the trophies to the winners. The weekend opens on Friday, May 30, with opening practice and front row qualifying for the First Union Six Hours. Saturday's activities include final qualifying, the three-hour Speedvision Cup race, and the start of One Lap of America. Saturday will also include a full slate of activities for the family, including entertainment, a picnic dinner and racing movies in the First Union Family Fun Tent, followed by a giant fireworks display. Redman will have no trouble finding Victory Circle for his presentation of the trophies to the winning drivers -- Redman has received his fair share of hardware at the Glen over the years, including the winner's prize at the Six Hours 28 years ago. A native of Burnley, Lancashire in Great Britain, Redman, 60, has resided in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, since 1982, with Marion, his wife of 32 years. Redman came to international prominence in the late Sixties, driving John Wyer's potent Gulf Ford GT-40 and Gulf Porsche 908. He won the U.S. Formula 5000 championship three consecutive years (1974-76), driving Carl Haas/Jim Hall Lolas to top-two finishes in 52 of 60 races, and captured the 1981 IMSA Camel GT title, driving a Lola T600 GTP. His international credits include driving in both Formula One and the World Endurance Championship. He was a member of eight championship winning teams, and was a factory driver for Ferrari, Ford, Porsche, Chevron, Aston Martin and Jaguar. Redman's favorite race at the Glen was his first victory here, co-driving with Jo Siffert in a factory Porsche 908 in the 1969 Six Hours. He once held the Glen's 3.377-mile circuit absolute lap record, with a lap of 123.694 mph in 1975, driving a Formula 5000 Lola T-400. In recent years, Redman competed in the 1989 GT-40 reunion (co-driving with Jacky Ickx) and won the 1990 Can-Am reunion race at the Glen. His international credits include three victories in the Rolex 24 at Daytona; two triumphs in the 12 Hours of Sebring; four victories in major endurance races at Spa Francorchamps; and multiple wins at Nurburgring, Kyalami, Imola, Brands Hatch and Monza. For ticket information, call (607) 535-2481, or visit the official Watkins Glen International web site at http://www.theglen.com.