Fernandez no stranger to Long Beach
No driver in the American Le Mans Series has more time on the track at Long Beach than Adrian Fernandez. One of the most versatile drivers in motorsports, Fernandez will make his 14th career start at Long Beach this weekend when the American Le Mans Series debuts on the southern California waterfront.
“I have been coming to Long Beach for so many years that it really feels like a ‘home’ event for me,” said Fernandez, who made his first start at Long Beach in 1992 in Indy Lights. “You have to love this race - the fans, the atmosphere. No matter where you go in the city, it is all about the Grand Prix.”
Fernandez, piloting the Lowe’s Fernandez Racing Acura-powered Lola with Luis Diaz, competed every year at Long Beach from 1993-2003 with Champ Car. He finished second in 1993 and posted fourth-place finishes in 1998 and 1999. He is still seeking that first elusive win.
“I would love to be able to do that this weekend especially as an Acura-powered team with HPD (Honda Performance Development) based in Santa Clarita and American Honda in Torrance. It would be very special to give them a win in their own backyards.”
Knowing the track layout and its nuances will help, he said. That plays to the advantage of the Lowe’s Fernandez team as Diaz also has extensive experience at Long Beach.
“We have 45 minutes of practice before qualifying and you need to try to give both drivers some time in the car in that window,” said Fernandez, second with Diaz in the LMP2 championship standings. “Then we have 20 minutes of final practice before the race. It is going to be challenging and more than ever, you need to roll out to pit lane for the first time with a good-handling car. This is a track that Luis and I know very well and, after our performance in St. Petersburg, I feel very good about this weekend.”
The Grand Prix of Long Beach, Round 3 of the 2007 American Le Mans Series, is scheduled for 4 p.m. PT on Saturday, April 14. SPEED will provide same-day broadcast coverage from 8 to 10:30 p.m. ET. MotorsTV in Europe, SPEED Latin America and 7TV in Russia will carry the race live. American Le Mans Radio and IMSA’s Live Timing & Scoring will be available at americanlemans.com.