Intersport Ready For The 2004 ALMS & Le Mans
dailysportscar.comDublin, Ohio, USA – After a number of tries, Clint Field and I were able to arrange a visit to the Intersport Racing shops in Dublin, a northwest suburb of Columbus - writes Tom Kjos.

These are new digs for the team, just a couple of miles from their former shop, and if shops alone could win a championship, we could just award the hardware now. Roomy doesn’t even start to describe this place – the transporters can be brought inside – and on the long axis are four large “work bays” for cars, with stainless steel topped workbenches on the three sides. Along the wall are offices and specialty shops – there was a metal lathe in one. Only one car graced the facility, looking lonely and sad; the B 2K / 10 Lola that started last season as the team’s ‘second car’, later replaced by a Riley & Scott Mark IIIC, that car in turn scheduled to be joined by a Lola B 2K / 40.

Jon heard us and bounded out of his office. He was eager to start the season, or just talk about it with an interested visitor ahead of Tuesday’s start of testing at Road Atlanta. Jon was bubbling over. “We’re going to have more power this year. I told John (Judd) after a couple of races that the power was embarrassing – I can be direct, you know – and it wouldn’t look good to have to go back to the AER unit. So, we’ve got a new 2004 spec 3.4 liter V8; we’ll be up a few more horsepower (although Jon mentioned it, dailysportscar decided to embargo the actual figure here). We’ve got new paddle shifters, too…oh, this winter has been too long.”

About the shift to the Judd, Jon said the different approach probably adds interest to the racing with the Dyson team and with Champion, and I tend to agree.

dailysportscar.comJon leaves for the Road Atlanta test this afternoon (Monday), and Clint tomorrow morning. They will have two cars there, the Lola B160 / Judd, and the Riley & Scott. The new Lola B2K / 40 is still in England, having its Judd 3.4 V8 (2004 spec.) installed, so will not make this test. A March 5 shipping date will put it on the track at Sebring on March 12. Clint is suitably careful not to let his expectations get away, but you can tell he is excited about the prospect of the Judd in a field of Nissans – like a fox in a chicken yard. He has not yet settled on a tire for this pursuit of the ALMS LMP2 championship – talks continue with Pirelli and Dunlop, expect a decision in about a week. The B160 will again be on Goodyear rubber.

Intersport will has two guaranteed entries at Le Mans and will take both of them up – one with the B160 (in LMP1) and the other the B 2K / 40 (in LMP2). “Dad has the Le Mans bug,” observes Clint wryly. Jon returns to announce that he is on his way to Atlanta. “It looks like rain all week. Well, they tell me that will help in setting up the paddle shifting.” All the team’s drivers except Duncan Dayton will be at Atlanta – Clint, Jon, Bill Binnie, Rick Sutherland, and Michael Durand. The team is still looking for a couple of funded drivers to partner the latter in the Riley & Scott.

Intersport will run two distinct programs this year – one LMP1 and one LMP2, but they share a goal – winning the ALMS championship. It would be a mistake not to take the Ohio team seriously.

More news from this team due this week, plus a first look at the B2K / 40 Judd. Ed.

 

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