Posted by: porschebahn | July 15, 2011

Preview for American Le Mans Series round 4 in Mosport, Canada

New confidence for Porsche pilots after first podium

Stuttgart. Once a year, the American Le Mans Series makes a detour to Canada. On the Mosport International Raceway near the major metropolis of Toronto, round four of the race series featuring the world’s fastest sports cars takes off on 24th July. On this demanding circuit, Porsche factory pilots Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Long (USA) aim to continue their strong performance with the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, with which they recently scored their first podium result of the season in Lime Rock.

The race

The Grand Prix of Mosport has been a regular fixture on the calendar since the American Le Mans Series began in 1999. It is the only race held in Canada.

The circuit

The 3.957 kilometre Mosport International Raceway with its ten corners is situated in Bowmanville, about an hour’s drive east of Toronto. It is regarded as one of the fastest and most demanding circuits on the American Le Mans Series calendar. Canada’s oldest permanent race track opened in 1961 with a sports car race that Stirling Moss won with a Lotus 19. From 1967 to 1977, the Canadian Formula 1 Grand Prix was also held in Mosport.

The Porsche drivers

With the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by Flying Lizard Motorsports, Porsche works drivers Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long contest the particularly tough GT class. Their works driver colleague, Wolf Henzler, shares driving duties in the cockpit of the Falken Tire team’s Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with Bryan Sellers (USA). Joining forces with American Seth Neiman in the second 911 GT3 RSR of Flying Lizard Motorsports is again Porsche factory pilot Marco Holzer (Germany). The 911 GT3 RSR run by Paul Miller Racing is manned by Sascha Maassen (Germany) and Bryce Miller (USA).

Quotes before the race

Hartmut Kristen, Porsche Head of motorsport: “Mosport is a track where engine performance is more important than on any other circuit. For this reason we were thrilled to hear that the rule-makers in the USA want to revise the imbalance that disadvantaged our cars. I hope that Flying Lizard and the Falken and Miller teams can continue their upward trend that they showed in Lime Rock.
Joerg Bergmeister: “Last year we travelled to Mosport without high expectations and we won. It’s not normally a circuit that particularly suits us and it features too many straights. But if we can manage to make everything come together like in Lime Rock recently then we might bring home a podium result. I’d be very happy with this.”
Patrick Long: “It’s not easy making a reliable prediction for Mosport. The track is very fast, and very demanding for the driver. It’s unforgiving with mistakes. That should work in our favour. I hope we can use this to our advantage.”
Wolf Henzler: “The tests that we conducted since Long Beach have brought us a huge step forward. This was clearly apparent in Lime Rock. We’re now in the position to drive consistently quicker lap times over a race distance. This will also help us in Mosport. There are many fast corners there that we drive in fourth and fifth gear, so our average speed is correspondingly high. I hope that we can continue our good performance from Lime Rock.
Marco Holzer: “Like Lime Rock, Mosport is a circuit that I’ve never raced on. So I’ll be taking a look at the videos again to check out the track before the first practice. I quickly became familiar with the Lime Rock circuit, so I’m hopeful it’ll be the same in Mosport. With its very fast corners, the track is a real challenge. I’m looking forward to it.”

The Porsche 911 GT3 RSR

The most successful GT race car of the last years takes off into the season with a raft of improvements. The output of the four-litre, six-cylinder boxer engine has increased to 455 hp (335 kW). Priority in the further development of the car was given to the newly designed aerodynamics at the front and rear. In 2010, the 911 GT3 RSR again won the environmental “Michelin Green X Challenge” classification as the GT vehicle with the best overall efficiency in the American Le Mans Series.

Porsche successes

Since 1999 Porsche has scored a total of seven class wins in Mosport. Joerg Bergmeister contributed greatly to four of these: In 2005 and 2009 he won with Patrick Long in the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, in 2003 and 2004 he triumphed with his works driver colleague Timo Bernhard.

The schedule

The race in Mosport starts on Sunday, 24 July, at 15.05 hours local time (21.05 hours CEST). The GT qualifying on Saturday will be shown from 21.50 hours CEST on

The American Le Mans Series

The American Le Mans Series (ALMS) was created in 1999 for sports prototypes and GT vehicles. The regulations correspond to those of the Le Mans 24 hour race. All classes start together but are classified separately:

GT class: This most popular class amongst car manufacturers is traditionally extremely well supported: Slightly modified standard sports cars with 440 to 500 hp and a minimum weight of 1,125 – 1,325 kilograms (e.g. Porsche 911 GT3 RSR).
GTC class: This class is reserved for vehicles from one-make race series (e.g. Porsche 911 GT3 Cup).
LMP1 class: Sports prototypes with up to 550 hp and a minimum weight of 900 kilograms.
LMP2 class: Sports prototypes with ca. 440 hp and an 825 kg minimum weight.
LMPC class: Prototype brand trophy series for the ORECA FLM 09.

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