TO THE SCENE OF ATLANTIC TITLE SUCCESS
de Ferran Motorsports star Simon Pagenaud is set to return to the scene of his 2006 Champ Car Atlantic Championship success at Road America this weekend – his first American Le Mans Series track that he has previously raced on.
Road America is a favorite circuit for both Pagenaud and Gil de Ferran, however, the team boss endured a run of misfortune here during his CART career. Despite qualifying in the top five in six of the seven years he raced here, de Ferran only recorded two race finishes.
de Ferran Motorsports' Panasonic-sponsored Acura ARX-01b has scored front row qualifying performances in each of its three ALMS events contested to date. The team will be looking to bounce back in this weekend’s longer four hour event after suffering a pit fire during the previous round at Mid Ohio. The #66 Acura will display a "get well soon" message for injured refueler Keith Jones who is recovering in hospital in Indianapolis.
GIL DE FERRAN"Road America is my one of my favorite tracks in the US, but unfortunately is not a place where I have enjoyed much success on race day, hopefully we will be able to fix that this time around."This track is really one of the best road courses in the US and in fact, there really aren't many circuits like this anymore in the world with a 4 mile lap. It is a place that I have always enjoyed driving on and I'm looking forward to racing the Panasonic Acura here this weekend. "We have been on the front row in all three of our races so far, the highlight being on pole at the last round, but given the nature of this place with its very long straights, keeping that record going will be a challenge because of the P1 cars’ straight line speed advantage. Nevertheless we will give it our best shot, not only in qualifying, but we have no reason to believe we cannot be competitive come race day."Mid Ohio was a very traumatic time for our team and we will be looking to bounce back here – not just for us, but for 'Jonesie' as well.”
SIMON PAGENAUD"Road America is certainly my favorite track. I clinched my Atlantic Championship here and last year in Champ Car I was quite competitive."We will have a low downforce package this weekend on our Acura – the first time we have tried that on the car so working hard on our mechanical set-up will be really important this weekend as well."Road America is a very different type of challenge compared to Mid Ohio – we have a long race, but you do have some time to breath on the straights."The Carousel is certainly my favorite part of the track, it was almost flat in a Champ Car, a really challenging type of corner."Obviously we will be looking to regroup after what happened at Mid Ohio. We've all been through quite an emotional time and we hope to see Keith back with us soon."
ROAD AMERICA FACT FILE
WHAT: Round 7, 2008 American Le Mans Series
WHERE: Road America, Elkhart Lake, WI
EVENT: Generac 500 at Road America presented by Time Warner Cable
RACE DURATION: 4 hours
LAP RECORD: Qualifying - 1:47.665 – Allan McNish. Audi R10Race - 1:49.303 – Allan McNish, Audi R10
TRACK LENGTH: 4.048 miles, 14 turns
TIMETABLE:Thursday, 7 August1:40pm – 2:10pm: Test Session (LMP1/LMP2 Classes)2:10pm – 3:10pm: Test Sesson (All Classes)
Friday, 8 August10:00am - 11:00pm: Practice (All Classes)1:50pm - 2:50pm: Practice (All Classes)3:30pm - 3:50pm: Qualifying (LMP1/LMP2 Classes)
Saturday, 9 August11:05am - 11:30am: Warm Up (All Classes)4:00pm - 8:00pm: Race (4 hours)
2007 RESULTS: LMP1: Overall: P2. Rinaldo Capello/Allan McNish, Audi R10, 96 lapsLMP2: Overall: P1. Romain Dumas/Timo Bernhard, Porsche RS Spyder, 96 lapsGT1: Overall: P13. Oliver Gavin/Olivier Beretta, Corvette C6-R, 91 lapsGT2: Overall: P15. Jaime Melo/Mika Salo, Ferrari F430 GT, 87 laps
GIL DE FERRAN AT ROAD AMERICACARTYear – Start – Finish2001 – 4th – 5th2000 – 2nd – 25th DNF - Mechanical1999 – 3rd – 14th DNF - Engine1998 – 5th – 16th DNF - Engine1997 – 7th – 3rd1996 – 2nd – 25th DNF - Contact1995 – 2nd – 21st DNF - Contact
SIMON PAGENAUD AT ROAD AMERICACHAMP CARYear – Start – Finish2007 – 8th – 11thATLANTICYear – Start – Finish2006 – 2nd – 17th DNF - Contact
TELEVISION:Sunday, 10 August - Tape DelayedUSA: SPEED TV, 2:00pm - 6:00pm (EDT)
Sunday, 10 August - Tape DelayedEUROPE: Motors TV, 4:00pm - 7:00pm (CET)UK: Motors TV, 3.00pm - 6.00pm (BST)
KEITH JONES FUND:Donations can be sent to either our shop or directly to the bank:
National City BankKeith E. Jones Fund1072 N Green StreetBrownsburg, IN 46112