Team ADT Champion Racing is aiming to conclude the pair of Canadian
events with victory in the fifth round of the American Le Mans
Series at Mosport tomorrow (17 Aug).
Johnny Herbert and JJ Lehto finished second in
the recent Trois Rivières race in Quebec but are determined on
repeating their Road Atlanta victory to re-emphasize the Florida
team’s championship title aspirations.
The Anglo-Finnish combo have recorded a win, two
seconds and a third in the four ALMS races staged so far this year.
Lehto lies third in the Driver’s standings with Herbert fourth. Lehto
qualified the 2002-spec Audi R8 on the second row of the 33-car grid
in today’s 20-minute time trial.
JJ set the third fastest time, a 1min 8.853secs,
an average speed of 128.570mph around the historic 2.459-mile track -
0.947secs slower than the pole-starting LMP675 class Lola-MG of James
Weaver/Butch Leitzinger - but the quickest LMP900 for the first time
Champion Racing, currently second in the Team’s
championship, recorded a sixth place courtesy of Allan McNish/Ralf
Kelleners (Porsche 911 GT1) at Mosport in the ’99 ALMS race and second
last year (Herbert/Stefan Johansson). Lehto has finished second
(1999) - by just 0.148-secs, the closest-ever ALMS finish - and third
(2002) at Mosport.
“This is my third
race at Mosport. I chased down leader [Emanuele] Pirro in the closing
stages on my Mosport début in 2001 but crashed disputing the lead. In
last year’s race, I was given a stop-go penalty for contact with a
backmarker which put us a lap down and destroyed any realistic hopes
of victory although Stefan [Johansson] and I did finish second. JJ
and I need a win having only finished third and second following our
Atlanta triumph in June so perhaps it will be third time lucky for me
here. Both JJ and I feel we have got ourselves a good set-up for the
race and while the LMP675 Lola-MGs may be very fast over one lap, in
race conditions we [Audi] could have the advantage.”
“I was on maximum
attack and had ‘pole’ twice but ultimately had to be content with
third place which is where we thought we’d qualify - the LMP675 cars
are very fast here. Frank [Biela] blocked me on one particular lap
near the end but I don’t believe I could have challenged James’ time.
Nothing less than a win will be acceptable. With the Joest Audi
finishing ahead of us at Sears and winning at Trois Rivières, Johnny
and I must drive the ADT Champion Audi in to ‘victory lane’ if we have
any thoughts on the Driver’s and Team’s ALMS titles. I was involved
in the closest ever ALMS race finish four years ago when I finished
second by less than two tenth’s of a second here so I think Mosport
Sunday: 0845-0915 - Warm Up. 1330-1615 – Race
Times from Friday
1. James Weaver/Butch Leitzinger, Lola EX257-MG, 1:09.471.
2. Frank Biela/Marco Werner, Audi R8, 1:09.830.
3. JJ Lehto/Johnny Herbert, Audi R8, 1:10.174.
4. Olivier Beretta/David Saelens, Panoz LMP01, 1:10.806.
5. Andy Wallace/Chris Dyson, Lola EX257-MG, 1:11.345.
6. Gunnar Jeannette/Scott Maxwell, Panoz LMP01, 1:11.694.
505 on the laser
alignment pad prior to Saturday's second practice
The crew inspect
and make adjustments during Saturday practice
JJ Lehto prepares
for Saturday Practice
JJ Lehto and Johnny
Herbert sign autographs for the Mosport fans
Johnny Herbert and
a bottle of "Flying Johnny" bitters..."smooth and
Johnny Herbert at
Moss Corner during Saturday Practice
JJ Lehto says hello
to Joest Racing's Frank Biela during Saturday Qualifying