Dyson Racing discusses Belle Isle Just because Dyson Racing is going head-to-head with Penske Racing in LMP2, don’t think the Dyson gang doesn’t appreciate all the work that Roger Penske and his organization has done at Detroit’s Belle Isle. As the American Le Mans Series prepares for this week’s Detroit Sports Car Challenge presented by Bosch, the Dyson team discusses the high points and enthusiasm for Belle Isle.
Chris Dyson “I think we have a much better car this year from race to race. Certainly, last year we had a very good car at Detroit. I’d say overall, the difference from 2007 to 2008 is that we have a car now that when we roll it off the truck every weekend, we have a reasonable idea of where we are going to be and that is a great way to start the weekend. So, I think based on last year’s race and where we stand this year, we should be in a good position at Detroit."
Guy Smith “Personally for me, last year in Detroit was one of my best races. I thoroughly enjoyed the circuit. I thought that Penske put on a great event. It was well-organized, well-managed and a beautiful setting. Hopefully, it will be just as nice this year and again looking forward to another good race.”
Butch Leitzinger “You probably couldn’t get two more different courses. Because Mosport is extremely flowing, a traditional race course with the grass burns. Detroit is a street course, a very beautiful street course; they have done an excellent job there. Last year was my first time there, I think it was a lot of people’s first time there and I think everyone was impressed with the facility. It wasn’t what a lot of us expected really. The course is extremely challenging and extremely difficult. With street courses you are always afraid that it is going to be just a bunch of second-gear, right-angle turns. This has some really challenging sweeping turns. The first turn at Detroit actually is kind of a decreasing radius, fourth gear turn. I actually spun there last year which was interesting. But it makes for a real challenge for engineers to completely change the car around from what they had at Mosport to Detroit.”
Marino Franchitti “I really enjoyed it. It was somewhere that my brother (Dario) had raced before so he had talked about it a little bit. Roger Penske put on a fantastic show. Getting up early in the morning and going out for a session, Roger was already there organizing stuff right down to the final detail, as he does. And late at night going back to the bus he was still there and that is why it was a success, because Roger put his mark on it. To me, we have many great events. I’ve been here a long time. For a first-year event like that, there were no negatives at all. I felt it was 100 percent a great event.”
The Detroit Sports Car Challenge presented by Bosch from Belle Isle is scheduled for 2:35 p.m. ET on Saturday, August 30. SPEED will broadcast the race live, and XM will air it from 5 to 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, August 31. Qualifying will be shown live online starting at 4:35 p.m. ET on Friday, August 29 on americanlemans.com and SPEEDtv.com. American Le Mans Radio will have live coverage of all on-track sessions at americanlemans.com, which also will feature IMSA’s Live Timing & Scoring. Dyson Racing
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