Stuttgart. The world’s fastest sports cars head to Canada: The Mosport International Raceway close to Toronto, a city of a million, is the only venue to host the American Le Mans Series outside the US. On the challenging circuit, Porsche works drivers Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Long (USA) are determined to repeat their strong performance that yielded them the first win of the season with the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR at Lime Rock.The race: Mosport has been a fixed highlight on the calendar since the inauguration of the American Le Mans Series in 1999.
The circuit: The 3.957 kilometre Mosport International Raceway is regarded as one of the fastest and most demanding circuits in the American Le Mans Series. Canada’s oldest permanent race track was opened in 1961 with a sports car race that Stirling Moss won at the wheel of a Lotus 19. From 1967 to 1977, Mosport hosted the Canadian Formula 1 Grand Prix.
The Porsche drivers
After claiming their first win of the season, Porsche factory pilots Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long again tackle the hotly contested GT class with Flying Lizard Motorsports’ Porsche 911 GT3 RSR against strong opposition from BMW, Chevrolet and Ferrari. Their works driver colleague, Wolf Henzler, shares the cockpit of Falken Tire’s Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with Bryan Sellers (USA). Manning the second Flying Lizard Porsche are Americans Seth Neiman and Andy Lally. Sascha Maassen (Germany) and Bryce Miller (USA) take up the challenge at the wheel of Paul Miller Racing’s 911 GT3 RSR.
The Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: As the top model of Porsche Motorsport’s customer racing vehicles, the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR headed into the 2012 racing season with extensive modifications. Particularly noticeable is the widening of the body by 48 millimetres. The aero kit is supplemented by a new intake air ducting.
Porsche’s successes: Since 1999, Porsche has clinched seven GT victories on the Mosport International Raceway. Joerg Bergmeister contributed to an impressive four of the triumphs: In 2005 and 2010 he won with Patrick Long in the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, and in 2003 and 2004 he joined forces with Timo Bernhard. In 2006 and 2007, the Porsche RS Spyder won the LMP2 class.
The schedule: The Mosport round takes off on Sunday, 22 July at midday local time (18.00 hours CEST) and runs over 2:45 hours. It is broadcast live on the internet on www.americanlemans.com. The GT qualifying can be seen on www.porsche.com/alms-live from 21.35 hours CEST.
Comments before the race
Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport: “The first win of the season by Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long at Lime Rock with the Flying Lizard Porsche gives all our teams contesting the American Le Mans Series new momentum. Since Laguna Seca, they’ve been competing with a new front-splitter and a adapted rear wing. At least the number 45 car could turn the rule-maker’s concessions in Lime Rock into a better performance. In Mosport the name of the game is to find a good compromise between downforce and top speed with these changes.”
Wolf Henzler: “The special thing about Mosport is that the grip in the corners is always different. That’s because they have patched up the tarmac surfaces with concrete slabs. Last year our tyres didn’t cope at all well with the constantly changing grip. Hopefully it’ll work better this year.”The American Le Mans Series
The American Le Mans Series (ALMS) was created in 1999 for sports prototypes and GT vehicles. The field is divided into five classes that start together but are classified separately:
- GT class: This most popular class amongst car manufacturers traditionally receives the most support: Slightly modified standard sports cars with 440 to 500 hp and a minimum weight of 1,245 kilograms (e.g. Porsche 911 GT3 RSR).
- GTC class: This class is reserved for vehicles from one-make race series like the 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 a 900 kg minimum weight.
- LMPC class: Prototype brand trophy series for the ORECA FLM 09.