RuSPORT MSR Houston test wrap-up Loveland, CO. - The RuSPORT team wrapped up their second testing session of the 2007 season at Mercedes Benz of Sugar Land Road Course in Houston with a solid performance, its testing goals achieved and the most miles run of any of the Champ Car teams. The fast and physically demanding 2.38-mile permanent road-course offered the team a chance to test the car at a facility new to RuSPORT. Justin Wilson, #9 CDW/Cosworth/Panoz/Bridgestone, was able to log significant miles in his new Panoz DP01 in preparation for his quest for the 2007 Vanderbilt Cup, and he was also able to end the first day of testing in Houston on top with a time of 1:30.162. His fastest lap of the two day test, however, came during the final session on Tuesday with a time of 1:11.179 at an average speed of 120.373-mph.
To assist in preparing for the upcoming season, RuSPORT enlisted the expertise of veteran Champ Car driver; Oriol Servia to run in the #10 RuSPORT/Cosworth/Panoz/Bridgestone car. Servia, who ran the most laps of any of the drivers, finished the two day test with a best lap time of 1:11.257 at 120.241-mph, which he ran on Tuesday afternoon. For both the RuSPORT team and the drivers, the test in Houston was an opportunity to continue to work on finding speed and reliability with the new Panoz DP01.
"I had a good test here in MSR Houston and ended with some good lap times," said Wilson at the end of the extra long final testing session. "We adjusted different things on the car, and the DP01 kept getting better and better. By the end of the day, we found a few adjustments to try in the future. I'm pleased with the results thus far and look forward to the next test at Laguna Seca in March and the 2007 racing season getting started in Las Vegas in April."
"Despite the cold, wet and windy weather here at the track, we were able to have a productive two days," began RuSPORT president Jeremy Dale. "The team was able to do a great job with the challenging weather. We ran a lot of miles on both the No. 9 and 10 cars, and with our primary focus being reliability, the Panoz DP01 did not let us down. We did get in to some performance development work, but because this was the teams first visit to MSR, and we only had one day of dry running, the focus was mostly on reliability and understanding what the car likes and does not like. I want to thank Oriol for coming in and helping us with our pre-season program. He is a real professional and did a tremendous job for us."
"First of all, I'm very happy with the results of the MSR Houston test," said Servia. "Most of the crew and engineers that I worked with at the test I have known through the years and worked with in the past. The track was a new place for me but I didn't feel at all out of place. I want to take this opportunity to thank the team for the hard work that they put in at the test. We were able to get a lot done and run quite a few good laps. It was a great opportunity to work with the team."
RuSPORT now looks forward to Champ Car World Series Spring Training which will be the final open test session of pre-season held on March 9th and 10th at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The first race of the Champ Car World Series 2007 season will be held on the Streets of Las Vegas, Sunday, April 8th, 2007. Las Vegas kicks off an exciting 16 race season in the Champ Car World Series. RuSPORT