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09.01.11

Lizards Return to East Coast for First Run at Baltimore

ALMS -Baltimore, MD

The Lizards return to the East Coast this week for the inaugural Baltimore Grand Prix, to be held Saturday, Sept 3. The two-mile, 12-turn temporary street circuit weaves through the heart of downtown Baltimore, circling the scenic Inner Harbor and Camden Yards. It's the first race on this circuit and the first Baltimore- based event for the American Le Mans Series. The Lizard driver lineup this weekend is Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long in the No. 45 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR and Seth Neiman and Darren Law in the No. 44.

Heading into the seventh race of the 9-event ALMS season, Bergmeister and Long are sixth in the GT drivers' championship with 51 points; Joey Hand and Dirk Mueller of the No. 56 BMW lead with 108 points. Flying Lizard is fourth in the GT team championships, tied with Team Falken Tire. 75 possible points remain: 20 at Baltimore, 25 at Laguna Seca and 30 at Petit Le Mans.

Lizard chief engineer Craig Watkins discussed the challenges of setting up a racecar for a new circuit: "There are many unknowns that we'll have to sort out quickly. First, we'll assess the coarseness of the track and see how much mechanical grip it creates so we can make the right tire compound choices. Then we'll focus on setting up the Porsches for what promises to be a complicated circuit. It's not a high speed track, but the combination of relatively short straights, hard braking zones and big direction changes (both 90 and 180 degree turns) will put a high demand on the brakes. The 911s can perform very well in this type of environment, so we may see the Porsches do well here and gain some advantage under braking."

Follow the Race:

The Baltimore Grand Prix broadcast on ABC begins at 4:00 pm ET on Sunday Sept. 4 (2:00 pm PT: note difference in starting time between time zones; please check local listings). ESPN3.com will carry live coverage of qualifying (GT starts at 3:00 pm ET on Friday Sept, 2) and the race (starting at 4:30 pm ET on Sat., Oct 3). American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón races are also broadcast live in Canada on Rogers SportsNet, in Europe on MotorsTV, and in the Middle East and Latin America on Fox. Check local TV listings for details. Outside of the U.S., the race will be available live at americanlemans.com/live.

Flying Lizard will broadcast the team radio live throughout the race; read the team race blog for frequent team updates at www.lizardms.com

About Flying Lizard Motorsports

Flying Lizard Motorsports has competed in the American Le Mans Series GT class since 2004. The team has finished in the top three in the ALMS GT drivers' and team championships every year since 2004. In 2010, Flying Lizard No. 45 drivers Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long won a hard-fought battle for the GT drivers' championship. In 2009 and 2008, the team swept all ALMS GT titles: drivers' championship (Bergmeister and Long in 2009, Bergmeister and Wolf Henzler in 2008); Flying Lizard won the team championship; and Porsche won the manufacturer championship. In 2009, the Flying Lizard No. 44 Porsche also won the Michelin Green X Challenge championship.

Flying Lizard has also competed in the 24 Heures du Mans from 2005 through 2011, finishing third in 2005, fourth in 2006, sixth in 2008, and sixth in 2011.

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  • Photo: Chapman/Autosport
  • Photo: Chapman/Autosport
  • Photo: Chapman/Autosport