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Sep 11, 2012 - 05:40 PM
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Lotus Alex Job Racing Ready For VIR 250
Posted by: newsla on Sep 11, 2012 - 05:34 PM
American Le Mans Series News
Lotus Alex Job Racing Ready For VIR 250


Lotus Alex Job Racing's (AJR) Bill Sweedler and Townsend Bell are ready for the American Le Mans Series VIR 250 to be run at Virginia International Raceway, Sept. 13-15.

 

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The team took the opportunity to attend the test held at VIR in June. Sweedler (Westport, Conn) and
Bell (San Luis Obispo, Calif.) were using the test session to get familiar with their new Lotus as well as making valuable data-gathering test laps. With seven races on the Lotus Evora GT, the team continues to improve the car while racing it in the tough ALMS GT Class.

The 3.27-mile, 17-turn undulating road course located 10 minutes north of Danville has nearly every kind of turn. The team had its best finish of the year, seventh, at Road America in August, a track very similar to VIR.

"The first time I ran VIR was at the ALMS test day," Sweedler said. "My reaction was a resounding 'WOW"! The facility is surrounded by beautiful country roads and when you get out on the track, you realize you are on the same undulating, tree lined, meandering country roads that happen to make up the race track! I can't wait to see the facility crowded with local fans cheering for our cars in the ALMS. The Lotus AJR Evora GTE should be well suited with its strong handling and braking characteristics to conquer the terrain. The entire AJR team, along with Yokohama, has been hard at work since the test to provide Townsend and me a great car for the VIR race. Battery Tender, Schecter Guitars, and William Rast plan to have a large guest list at the track, so our entire team in pumped for a strong run this weekend."

Bell is looking forward to seeing how far the Lotus has come since the test in June.

"I turned my first laps at VIR at the June test," Bell said. "It felt a lot like my favorite natural road courses like Mid-Ohio and Road America. At that time, we were in the early stages of feeling out the Lotus Evora. I am anxious to get back to VIR to see how far we have come with the car. Since then the team, together with Yokohama, have done a lot of work on the car. I hope that the high-speed aero work we have been doing pays dividends at this fast rolling road course."
Alex Job, team principal, is glad the team attended the test in June.

"We attended the test in June and I am glad we did," Job said. "The miles we were able to put on the car were especially valuable at that time. The car was new to us and we were heading into the heart of the ALMS season. We also have the data and can apply that to the car, so we are up-to-speed right off of the truck. VIR is a high-speed track that rewards aero handling, something we have been focusing on. I am looking forward to seeing how our, on the fly, updates improved the car this weekend."

The American Le Mans Series VIR 250 qualifying can be viewed Sept.14 at 3:25 p.m., EDT on ESPN3.com, with race live streaming coverage be shown Sept. 5 at 2:15 p.m. EDT on ESPN3.com and the television broadcast airing Sept.16 at 5:00 p.m., EDT on ESPN 2.

Alex Job Racing is one of the most successful teams in sports car racing. The team's resume includes: ALMS GT series championships in 2004, 2003, 2002; a record 22 consecutive ALMS GT pole positions; two-time 24-Hour of Le Mans GT class winners; Eight 12-hour of Sebring wins in 2012, 2010, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 1999 and 1995.

The ALMS GT Class is production-based, moderately-modified two-wheel drive race cars comprise the GT class - BMW M3, Corvette C6.R, Ferrari F458 GT, Ford GT-R, Jaguar XKR GT, Lotus Evora and Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. The GT cars share many similarities to their showroom brands. With top speeds of up to 180 mph, these elite GTs produce between 450-500 horsepower and have a minimum weight of 1,145 kilograms (2,480 pounds). All GT race cars have green Leader Light System race position lights and green car numbers.



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