MICHELIN EXTENDS STREAK TO NINE CONSECUTIVE GT1 VICTORIES AT MOSPORT FESTIVAL (BOWMANVILLE, ONTARIO, CANADA) --- David Brabham and Andy Wallace, driving the No. 4 Michelin Pilot-equipped Visteon Panoz GTR-1, delivered Michelin its ninth ...
MICHELIN EXTENDS STREAK TO NINE CONSECUTIVE GT1 VICTORIES AT MOSPORT FESTIVAL
(BOWMANVILLE, ONTARIO, CANADA) --- David Brabham and Andy Wallace, driving the No. 4 Michelin Pilot-equipped Visteon Panoz GTR-1, delivered Michelin its ninth consecutive victory in GT1 racing, capturing the Mosport Festival at Mosport International Raceway. The Michelin-equipped No.5 Panoz, driven by Eric Bernard and Raul Boesel, finished second in GT1 in the 2 hour 45 minute SPORTS CAR-sanctioned race.
Brabham traded the lead with Bernard in the closing laps, but prevailed by .324 seconds. Brabham established a new record for the fastest race lap in GT1 around the 10-turn 2.459-mile natural road course at a time of 1:14.685=118.530 mph on lap 109 of the 128-lap race. Brabham broke the old record of 1:18.634=112.577 mph, set last year by Andy Wallace in a Panoz. His record race lap was quicker than his record-setting qualifying lap.
"The combination of medium and soft Michelin tires on the Panoz cars gave us consistency all day, and the drivers were able to race at their qualifying speed at the end of the day." said Donnie Wilson of Michelin Race Tire Development. "We're happy with the grip and the handling we had with the Pilot radials."
"We ran the medium tires on the left and the softer compound on the right and we got the air pressure right," said Andy Wallace. "So, the Michelin tires were the same throughout the whole stint, which is very impressive, because it was hot."
Brabham, driving the No. 4 Panoz, captured the GT1 pole with a record time 1:14.710=118.49 mph. Dorsey Schroeder set the old record of 1:17:361=114.430 in 1997. Bernard qualified the No 5 Panoz second with a time of 1:15.801=116.78 mph, also breaking the track record.
Michelin and Panoz are partnered for the entire 1998 North American GT racing season. They are running all Professional Sports Car races and select USRRC events. Michelin is also supporting the Champion Porsche entry driven by USRRC GT1 points leader Thierry Boutsen and Bob Wollek. They are competing in select SPORTS CAR and USRRC races. Both teams will compete at Watkins Glen International, August 23, where Boutsen can wrap up the USRRC GT1 driver's title.
Michelin began the season by claiming the GT1 class victory in the Rolex 24 at Daytona with the Rohr Motorsports Porsche 911 GT1. Panoz Motorsports drivers Wallace and Brabham led a Michelin sweep of GT1 at Sebring. Champion Porsche finished in the runner up position, followed by a second Panoz entry. Panoz also has victories at Las Vegas, Homestead, Lime Rock Park, Mid-Ohio and Minneapolis. Champion Porsche won at Road Atlanta.
Michelin, which brought the world the radial tire more than 50 years ago, is the world's largest tire company. It has 22 plants in North America and produces tires for every type of vehicle, from bicycles to the space shuttle.