Mid-Ohio hosted the third round of the American Le Mans Series at the weekend with several Lola sportscar
customers in action.
Dyson Racing made the long journey from Houston to Mid-Ohio in good spirits after a highly promising
weekend in Texas seven days previously. After finishing second in class and claiming pole position for that race,
James Weaver attempted to repeat the feat but ultimately had to settle for 3rd place, between the Porsche
and Audi cars after challenging for victory during stages of the two and three quarter hour event.
Despite the Chris Dyson/Guy Smith car suffering from a mechanical problem early on in the race, the long-term
Lola customers were pleased with progress made during the Mid-Ohio weekend.
After finishing 1-2 at Mid-Ohio last year, Dyson Racing didn't quite endure the same result this season but
still showed their pace and potential in the new Lola B06/10.
Early on in the race, Butch Leitzinger had enjoyed a titanic battle with Timo Bernhard in the Penske Porsche
and the American much enjoyed the scrap, saying: "It was a great battle. Both with Bernard in the Porsche
and McNish in the Audi, we had a nice dice going on. Everyone was driving aggressively and right up to the
line of professional courtesy - it was very tough but fair."
On taking over from his team mate, James Weaver was running in second place, forty-five minutes from the
end when a punctured tyre put him in to the gravel. "The left rear tyre went down going into the hairpin," said
Weaver. "The car shot straight into the hedge and by the time we dug ourselves out, they wouldn't open the
pits and we lost two laps with that. After we got the tyre replaced and back in the race, the car was fine, it
was just that tyre going down that did us in."
It was a bitter pill for Weaver/Leitzinger and the Dyson team but a 2nd place in the LMP1 results ensures that
they are still within 12 points of the Audi pairing of McNish and Capello.
Intersport Racing claimed 3rd position in the LMP2 class at Mid-Ohio and 4th position overall. Liz Halliday
and Clint Field were campaigning the AER engined Lola B05/40 on home turf as the Intersport team are
based at nearby Dublin. The pair still lead the LMP2 class after class victories at Sebring and Houston.
Like Leitzinger earlier in the race, Clint Field enjoyed a spirited fight with some of the LMP1 machinery,
saying: "I had a great little battle with Dindo [Capello] and [James] Weaver which I enjoyed enormously.
I seemed to have them in the esses and carousel, but they could pull away in the straights. The important
thing for us today, is that we came up with some good points going into Lime Rock [July 1] and we're still
at the top of the table."
Autocon Motorsport were also in action with their LMP1 Lola B01/60-AER which once again was shared
by Chris McMurry and Brian Willman. The blue and white car finished a creditable 3rd in class and 11th overall.
Van Der Steur Racing took their B2K/40 to 5th place in LMP2 with Ben Devlin again doing some very
quick laps in the AER powered car.
The next race on the schedule is Dyson Racing's home track of Lime Rock where they will also celebrate their
twenty-first anniversary of top line sportscar competition. They debuted their Porsche 962 at Lime Rock in the
International Motorsports Association GTP class in 1985 and won the race with Drake Olson driving. In
the twenty years since, they have not relinquished their title as America's premier sport car team.
Pos Drivers Car Laps
1. Bernhard/Dumas Porsche RS Spyder 119
2. Maassen/Luhr Porsche RS Spyder 119
3. McNish/Capello Audi R8 119
4. Leitzinger/Weaver Lola B06/10 AER 116
5. Gavin/Beretta Corvette C6-R 116
6. O'Connell/Fellows Corvette C6-R 116
7. Turner/Enge Aston Martin DB9 115
8. Halliday/Field Lola B05/40 AER 115
9. Sarrazin/Lamy Aston Martin DB9 114
10. Cosmo/Bach Courage C65 Mazda 112
11. McMurry/Lewis Lola EX257 AER 111
12. Henzler/van Overbeek Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 110
13. Brabham/Maxwell Panoz Esperante GTLM 110
14. Neiman/Law Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 109
15. Auberlen/Hand BMW E46 M3 109
16. Marks/Sellers BMW E46 M3 107
17. Salom/Melo Ferrari 430 GT Berlinetta 105
18. Devlin/Van der Steur Lola B2K/40 AER 104
19. Long/Bergmeister Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 93
20. Jeannette/Milner Panoz Esperante GTLM 57
21. Dyson/Smith Lola B06/10 AER 3
22. Rockenfeller/Graf Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 0