Flying Lizard Completes Successful ALMS Winter Test
American LeMans Series
The Flying Lizard squad heads back to their home base in California today after a successful two-day test in Sebring, Florida in which fifteen teams participated. The team's No. 45 and No. 44 Porsche 911 GT3 RSRs took to the track in their distinctive red and silver livery, and the team welcomed their new 2010 sponsor Openwave, who joins returning sponsors ShoreTel, eSilicon and Redlinecoffee.com.
All four Lizard drivers participated in the test: Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long in the No. 45 Porsche (reuniting to defend their 2009 ALMS GT2 drivers' championship) and Seth Neiman and Darren Law in the No. 44 Porsche. Although rain was forecast, the weather cooperated and all four 4-hour test sessions presented a dry track and good racing conditions. For the Lizards, it was a chance to progress in development work that they had started in an earlier test at Sebring in January.
Chief engineer Craig Watkins discussed the test, "We made a lot of progress on car setup over the two days. This was our opportunity to get familiar with components that will make up the new 2010 Michelin tires, and understand what the car needs to get the most out of them. We had few technical issues over the test so we were able to fully focus on setup. Sebring is an extremely rough and bumpy circuit and a twelve-hour race. On the No. 44, we concentrated on spring rates and damper settings, striving for a balance between a fast pace and a car that is still be reasonably comfortable to drive."
Driver of the No. 45 Porsche Patrick Long commented, "There was a good turnout this week - it's always heartening to see car counts up and new faces in the paddock. The test itself has been productive and focused; we've had plenty of track time and few distractions. Come race week, we'll see a different environment: more teams, more traffic, track time at a premium, everything just more intense. In the No. 45, it took us a while on Monday to lock in on a direction, but on Tuesday we made a lot of progress on our setup both for Sebring and the rest of the year. Both Joerg and I are excited about this season: it will certainly be a challenge but one I believe the Lizards are ready to meet."
Team principal and driver of the No. 44 Porsche Seth Neiman added, "It's great to be back racing again this year in the ALMS. The 2010 GT field will be extremely competitive: numerous cars have the potential to run up front and we will all certainly be looking for every advantage we can find - no matter how incremental. The Winter Test gave us a chance to refine our work over the last several months and clarify what we need to improve - a very productive two days."
About Flying Lizard Motorsports
Flying Lizard Motorsports competes in the American Le Mans Series GT class. The team has finished in the top three in the ALMS GT2 drivers' and team championships every year since 2004, their first year of professional competition. In 2009, the team swept all ALMS GT2 titles: Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long won the drivers' championship in the No. 45; Flying Lizard won the team championship; Porsche won the manufacturer championship; and the Flying Lizard No. 44 Porsche won the Michelin Green X Challenge championship (new for 2009). It is the team's second consecutive triple championship: in 2008 Joerg Bergmeister and Wolf Henzler won the ALMS GT2 drivers' title in the No. 45; Flying Lizard won the team championship; and Porsche won the manufacturers' title.
Flying Lizard has also competed in the 24 Heures du Mans from 2005 through 2009, finishing third in 2005, fourth in 2006, and sixth in 2008. The privateer team is based in Sonoma, California.
Flying Lizard is sponsored by ShoreTel, a leading provider of enterprise IP telephony solutions; Openwave Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: OPWV), a global software innovator delivering context-aware mediation and messaging solutions that enable communication service providers to create and deliver smarter services; eSilicon, a semiconductor company; and RedlineCoffee.com, a premium coffee company dedicated to motorsport enthusiasts. Team partners include Porsche and Michelin.
Visit the team website at www.lizardms.com.
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