American Le Mans Series Green Hornet Battles for Fifth Podium of Season

Discussion in 'National Series' started by Administrator, Aug 22, 2012.

  1. Administrator

    Administrator Administrator Staff Member

    Elkhart Lake, WI (August 20, 2012) - Following a grueling four hours that challenged drivers, crew members, and strategists alike, Green Hornet Racing emerged from a challenging Road America Road Race Showcase to finish third.

    Once again entering two cars in an effort to bolster their fading championship chances, hopes were high for the no. 34 and no. 33 Green Hornet Racing Porsche GT3 Cup cars, who qualified second and third in the GT-Challenge (GTC) category for Saturday's seventh round of The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón.

    As a four-hour race at the scenic 4-mile, 14-turn road course, strategy would play a critical role in the outcome of the race, with multiple teams choosing to start the race with their lead drivers. When the green flag fell, a furious pace would ensue, with Green Hornet drivers Damien Faulkner (no. 34) and Patrick Huisman (no. 33) making immediate work of the field. As a strong Green Hornet one-two lead emerged between Faulkner and Huisman, Faulkner would eventually take a commanding pace, with both Faulkner and Huisman trading off for fastest laps.

    Unfortunately, as the field hit the one-hour mark, the nature of the race began to change as the field came under a full course caution for an incident with one of the Prototype Challenge (PC) vehicles. With both Faulkner and Huisman pitting to switch seats with their co-drivers, Peter LeSaffre (no. 34) and Brian Wong (no. 33), the struggles would start early for the no. 33 team.

    As Wong exited the pits, a problem became immediately apparent as he struggled to get his car around the track. Choosing to take a very cautious lap around the track once he discovered a mechanical issue on the car, the Newport Beach, California native would eventually make his way back in to the pits, a mis-cue with the tires being the eventual diagnosis.

    By time Wong returned to the track and the field shook itself out, the no. 33 would find itself two laps down, unable to ever recover due to the furious pace of the race.

    With attention now on the no. 34, a strong stint by Peter LeSaffre would keep the team in contention, with a clear three-way battle emerging between the no. 22 Alex Job entry, no. 11 JDX entry, and no. 34 Green Hornet Racing entry.

    With the second half of the race well under way, the key would become race strategy in matched levels with race pace. With drivers Jeroen Bleekemolen (no. 22), Martin Ragginger (no. 11) and Faulkner matching each other lap for lap, the furious pace for the two proved difficult for anyone to make a solid run on the other. As the high-speed nature of the Road America circuit provided a great challenge for any driver to safely maneuver around the other, the race began to settle in, and Faulkner, from Ireland, appeared to be settled in with a third-place finish.

    As the checkered flag fell, the no. 34 would eventually take third after a hard fought race, the fifth podium of the season for Green Hornet Racing, and fourth podium for Faulkner and LeSaffre. The no. 33 of Wong and Huisman would remain two laps behind after their early difficulties, eventually being credited with sixth.

    For Team Owner Peter LeSaffre, while not a win, the team can take some solace in a hard fought race.

    "This was simply a hard fought race," stated LeSaffre. "Damien did a great job of driving, and the guys put together a fast car, it was just tough to know what the right calls would be. With the 22 taking the victory, this really hurts us in the championship, but we still have a mathematical shot and we'll still try."

    For Damien Faulkner, the sentiment is shared.

    "Whilst third place isn't a disaster we were still disappointed at not being able to challenge for the win," stated Faulkner. "I just couldn't get around the number 11. We missed out on pole after I made a mistake on my best lap but at least we took the fastest race lap. My sincere thank you to the whole Green Hornet crew. We now look forward to Baltimore."

    For Brian Wong, making his Green Hornet debut, an up and down day provided for an interesting return to the series.

    "When I got in the car I could immediately tell something was wrong," stated Wong. "It's unfortunate we had the issue that we did in the pits, but overall it was a great experience. I appreciate the support from Peter and everyone at Green Hornet Racing, and I wish them the best of luck for the season."

    As the summer stretch continues, the series will return to racing in just two weeks time, returning to the streets of Baltimore on Labor Day weekend. The Baltimore Sports Car Challenge presented by SRT will take place on August 31 and September 1, with live streaming take place on Saturday, September 1 at 4:15PM ET, and ABC television coverage the following day 12PM ET.

    ---

    ABOUT GREEN HORNET RACING
    Having run a partial 2011 campaign in partnership with other organizations, Green Hornet Racing embarks on its first full season effort for the 2012 season, this year running an in-house campaign in the American Le Mans Series GT-C ranks. Coming off of a 2011 season that featured improved finishes at every race, capped off with the team's first podium at Laguna Seca, the team looks to 2012 as a new opportunity to perform at the top level of professional sportscar racing. Having assembled a top-flight team of experienced engineers and technicians, the crew behind this new organization have amassed a number of wins and championships, and combined with a strong driver line-up, the team will be a contender at every race.

    Full Team Reports and Information can be found at www.greenhornetracing.com.
    *



    Source:
    Green Hornet Racing


    Races:
    Road America Road Race Showcase




    More...
     

Share This Page