Trina Solar/GNC Beverages/Motegi Racing Lola-Judd Scores Team-Best Second-Place ALMS P2 Finish at Road America
ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (August 19, 2012) – Posting the highest race result yet for Dempsey Racing’s new American Le Mans Series (ALMS) presented by Tequila Patrón P2 program in only the team’s fourth race, Patrick Dempsey and Joe Foster finished second in the Road America Road Race Showcase, Saturday, August 18, co-driving the No. 27 Trina Solar/GNC Beverages/Motegi Racing Lola-Judd.
Driving just under the final two hours of the four-hour endurance race, Dempsey was once again at the wheel of the No. 27 at the checkered flag for a milestone team result. He also drove to the finish when he and Foster co-drove to a then career-best third-place P2 showing last month in the Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park. Saturday’s result also saw Dempsey and Foster finish ninth overall in what turned out to be just over a 400-mile race on the 4.048-mile Road America circuit.
"Of course, we are very happy to get another step up on the podium from Lime Rock, it was a great day for the team as we continue to learn and progress,” Dempsey said. “I was able to get in the car in great track position and the late race cautions let us stretch the fuel window to the finish without having to put Joe back in. The crew did fantastic pit stops and we continue to learn more and more about the car, the great Michelin tires and the P2 class in general. I can't wait to drive this car some more!"
Dempsey Racing is in its first partial season of development with the new P2 program. Saturday’s result at Road America is the team’s best showing to date after previous races at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Lime Rock and Mid-Ohio.
Foster, who raced despite some lingering soreness in his ribs and right ankle after being knocked into a retaining wall in an accident one week earlier at Watkins Glen, drove the first two hours and 10 minutes of the race. He pitted to turn the No. 27 over to Dempsey second in P2, third overall and on the lead lap. At one 30-minute point at mid-race, the Trina Solar/GNC Beverages/Motegi Racing car was lapping at the same pace and just four seconds behind the more established No. 95 Level 5 P2 entry of Luis Diaz.
"I'm very proud of the team as we had near perfect strategy calls from the pit box and the car was great in traffic,” Foster said. “We ended up on the lead lap in P2 just past half distance and did benefit from the misfortune of others as far as the finishing order. It’s important to note, however, that before anyone in the class had problems, we were only one lap down to the leaders after three-and-a-half-hours of racing at this awesome track. The whole weekend was a job well done by Patrick and the entire team. In general, both through qualifying and races, we are getting closer and closer to the leaders pace at each event.”
Dempsey Racing’s solid weekend at Road America didn’t stop with the P2 program. Teammates Henri Richard and Duncan Ende finished just one-spot behind the No. 27 to complete the overall top-10 finishing order in their PC-class Silicon Tech/Dempsey Racing No. 25 STANDD/Racer’s Roast Oreca FLM09. The No. 25 was fifth in the PC division.
- Dempsey, Foster, Richard and Ende were among a group of 450 cyclists that participated in the annual Subaru Tour de Road America Bike Ride to Fight Cancer Friday night at the track. The event and a related silent auction raised $35,000, exceeding the goal of $30,000, and Dempsey Racing and its drivers played a key role in the success. Dempsey rode a Specialized Roubaix Pro, with Shimano Electronic Shifters and full carbon frame, donated by longtime team partner Specialized Bicycles that Richard later won with a winning bid of $10,000 in the featured live auction. Ende’s sponsor Racer’s Roast also joined Specialized and the Dempsey Racing team in stepping up to support the Tour. The annual ride benefits the Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer, the official charity of ALMS, as well as LIVESTRONG and the Vince Lombardi Foundation and Vince Lombardi Cancer Clinic in nearby Sheboygan, Wis.
- Dempsey Racing had a top-10 weekend in total that spanned two countries and included four race cars and eight drivers competing in two different racing series. Just hours before the team’s ALMS prototypes earned P2 runner-up, top-five PC and top-10 results overall at Road America, Dempsey Racing’s GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series Mazda RX-8 GT program put together its first double top-10 finish of the season in the Montreal 200. Charles Espenlaub and Charlie Putman finished sixth in the No. 41 FishingCapital.com/Bass 2 Billfish Mazda RX-8 GT while Tom Long and Scott Maxwell – subbing for Dempsey and Foster – placed eighth in the No. 40 VISIT FLORIDA Mazda RX-8 GT.
About Dempsey Racing: A fulltime and year-round enterprise, Dempsey Racing (www.dempseyracing.net) is a professional sports car auto racing team based in the greater Atlanta area in Flowery Branch, Georgia. Owned by actor/driver Patrick Dempsey, the team races in support of the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing (www.dempseycenter.org) in Dempsey’s hometown of Lewiston, Maine, and the Team Seattle Guild (www.teamseattle.com) to benefit the Seattle Children’s Hospital Heart Center (www.seattlechildrens.org).
About Dempsey Racing’s Partners: Dempsey Racing (www.dempseyracing.net) is an official Mazda (www.mazdausa.com) racing team and has competed exclusively in Mazda RX-8 GTs in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series since 2007. A primary partner for the Mazda program is VISIT FLORIDA (www.VISITFLORIDA.com), the official tourism marketing corporation for the State of Florida, and its www.ShareaLittleSunshine.org and www.FishingCapital.com promotional programs, and the television show Bass 2 Billfish with Peter Miller. Additional Dempsey Racing partners include Trina Solar (www.trinasolar.com), a leading manufacturer of high-quality solar photovoltaic (PV) modules that deliver reliable, environmentally-friendly power to homes and businesses and value to customers, and Specialized Bicycle Components (www.specialized.com), a manufacturer and worldwide supplier of technically advanced bicycles and related components. New partners for 2012 include GNC Beverages (www.drinkGNC.com), built upon the 75 years of nutrition innovation from the leader in sports nutrition, Motegi Racing (www.motegiracing.com), a leading manufacturer of competition and high-performance tuning wheels designed and engineered for performance, Racing Electronics (www.racingelectronics.com), the number one source for professional race communications worldwide, and Silicon Tech Racing (www.silicontechracing.com) which provides high-tech corporations a dedicated marketing platform through sports car road racing focused on technology executives.