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ALMS – Chevy Presents Petit Le Mans – Hours 6, 7 & 8
Three Pairs & Clint
© Tom Kjos
Road Atlanta, Braselton, Georgia, USA – When we left you, it was Werner, Kaffer, and Lammers at the front; it was Intersport with LMP2 in hand; Corvettes in GTS (of course) and two Alex Job Porsches at the head of GT (surprised, right?).

Right now, at the front, it’s Lehto/Werner, Herbert/Kaffer, Lammers/Dyson. It’s Corvette 1-2; Clint Field has about a seven lap lead in the always scintillating LMP2 “race”, and the AJR Porsches are nose-to-tail at the front of GT.

Notice the severely holed louvres on the #38: #2 looked just as bad.

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So Russell and I had the idea of telling ya’all (that’s suthrun for the pronoun “you”) to just go back and read our five hour report. Unfortunately, the Ed. won’t let us do that, so we’ll do our best to describe the race at five hours – beyond what we already told you in paragraph one.

Since Tracy Krohn put Butch Leitzinger behind the way for thirty laps to fix a broken side-pod and radiator, the two Dyson Lolas have run consistently at a “race pace” – that includes a 1:13.868 for Lammers, second best to the #38 Audi currently leading the race. Unfortunately, with Chris Dyson now seven laps adrift of Herbert’s second place #2 Audi, it will take a major event at the front to put the Lola in contention for the win. Similarly, with Butch Leitzinger, Andy Wallace and James Weaver now in fourth place (in P1), thirty-five laps behind Lehto and their closest pursuer, Creation Autosportif, 169 laps in arrears, and parked in the paddock, it appears that one of the Dyson cars will land on the podium.

Nic Minassian expressed disappointment at Creation’s result and issued a challenge all at the same time, “Well, I’m disappointed for sure but we were very quick, we nearly had pole position and we know we can race well now against the other prototypes in the ALMS. I’m looking forward to Laguna very much and hopefully we will be able to finish the job we started here.”

The two Corvettes are running #3, then #4; then it’s #4, #3, then the other way around again. If you like close in “spec cars” that’s the race for you. When do we get Papis and Magnussen head-to-head? Maybe Doug Fehan will put them in for the last stint so they can race for the finish. Was that Tom Weickardt, who has the Carsport Viper in third, who was seen in discussions with the Corvette boss earlier.

An Audi is in the sandbox at turn 10. Is it JJ’s co-driver? is it Jörg Müller? Oh, no! Ah, good news, it’s not a white BMW, I was having a flashback there. It’s Johnny Herbert in the #2 Audi; we didn’t want JJ to go through another one of those! That helps JJ and Marco Werner, who pick up some room on the #2 Audi. Not as much as we thought, since Herbert entered a closed pit and will not be assessed the expected penalty, since “the team did not actually start to work on the car until after the pit had opened” – hmmmm. Now that opens up lots of tactical possibilities in the future doesn’t it?

Herbert was struggling with oil on the track – the #6 Lamborghini had split a cooler – lapping the #13 Lola Millington, and a possible fuel leak: he pitted again for the team to check it, then again for Pierre Kaffer to finish the race.

Sixteen is now in sixteenth in the hands of Andy Wallace, right behind Tim Sugden’s J3 Porsche on the leader board, and remains fourth in class. The recovering #45 Lizard Porsche has taken a place from #79 (sixth in GT), the J3 car having had two front punctures. The Petersen Porsche is a very secure third, Risi and TRG's #66 both having lost laps because of unfortunate track position under the Safety Cars.

We got our green flag right before the eight hour mark. The leader will have completed 320 laps – 812 miles. This one will likely go closer to ten hours than any previous running. Another yellow will make it a timed race. Waiting for Magnussen and Papis.

By the way, we’ve lost Robin Thompson: he’s headed back to Florida (a ten hour drive) to board up his house against you know what. Russell has stayed – and asked his neighbour to undertake hurricane duties.

Eight Hour Positions
1 38 P1 Marco Werner 323 0.000 1:13.315

2 2 P1 Pierre Kaffer 321 2 Laps 1:13.970
3 20 P1 Chris Dyson 317 4 Laps 1:13.838
4 4 GTS Oliver Gavin 309 8 Laps 1:19.293
5 3 GTS Ron Fellows 309 2.323 1:19.713
6 30 P2 Robin Liddell 302 7 Laps 1:18.226
7 24 GT Wolf Henzler 297 5 Laps 1:24.347

8 23 GT Sascha Maassen 297 0.966 1:24.420
9 13 P2 Ryan Eversley 295 2 Laps 1:21.294
10 31 GT Craig Stanton 295 1:00.419 1:25.011
11 35 GT Fabrizio De Simone 293 2 Laps 1:24.812
12 66 GT Cort Wagner 292 1 Lap 1:24.813
13 45 GT Patrick Huisman 290 2 Laps 1:24.501
14 79 GT Tim Sugden 288 2 Laps 1:25.289
15 67 GT Philip Collin 288 1.098 1:26.458
16 16 P1 Andy Wallace 288 28.290 1:14.295
17 43 GT Lucas Luhr 288 50.698 1:24.052
18 93 GT Stephane Ortelli 285 3 Laps 1:25.526
19 8 GT Charles Espenlaub 278 7 Laps 1:27.587
20 71 GTS Jean Philippe Belloc 276 2 Laps 1:21.675
21 63 GTS Joao Barbosa 273 3 Laps 1:20.571
22 6 GTS Tracy Krohn 257 16 Laps 1:23.991
23 44 GT Lonnie Pechnik 222 35 Laps 1:24.845
24 50 GT Gunnar Jeannette 210 12 Laps 1:25.018
25 56 P2 Jeff Bucknum 209 1 Lap 1:21.930
26 5 GTS Peter Kox 184 25 Laps 1:21.772
27 27 P1 Jamie Campbell Walter 130 54 Laps 1:14.482
28 10 P2 Ian James 128 2 Laps 1:18.421
29 60 GT Ian Donaldson 127 1 Lap 1:27.445
30 37 P1 Jon Field 120 7 Laps 1:14.823
31 19 P2 Erik van der Steur 107 13 Laps 1:26.402
32 92 GT Andrea Montermini 64 43 Laps 1:24.781
33 12 P1 Michael Lewis 12 52 Laps 1:18.506
34 78 GT Manuel Matos 11 1 Lap 1:30.178

 

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