By Patrick Rall
Over the past few days, the cars of the American LeMans
Series have taken to the 2.54 track at Road Atlanta in preparation for the
final race of the 2012 ALMS season – the Petit Le Mans. Among the GT Class field during the Sunday
and Monday practice sessions were both of the 2013 SRT Viper GTS-R teams, with
both teams turning in respectable times that put them in the middle of the
field along with being within a second of the quickest cars in the GT Class. The drivers during these test sessions were
not specified. For the big race on Saturday,
the #91 car will be piloted by Kumo Wittmer, Dominik Farnbacher and Ryan
Hunter-Reay while the #93 Viper will be driven by Marc Goossens, Tommy Kendall
and Jonathon Bomarito.
On Sunday, the #91 Forza Motorsport Viper GTS-R and the #93
Pennzoil Ultra Viper GTS-S ran in both of the practice sessions. In the first, shorter practice session, the
#91 Viper ran just 7 laps but turned in the better time of the two Viper
entries with a best lap of 1:22.108. For
comparison, the quickest car in the GT field was the Team Falken Tire Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with a time of 1:21.062
– putting the Forza Motorsport Viper just over a second off the class
pace. The #93 Viper was just a half of a
tenth of a second slower in its best lap with a time of 1:22.159. Overall, the two Vipers were 9th
and 10th overall in the 16 car field.
second, longer practice session, both of the Viper GTS-R teams shaved about a
second and a half off of their times from the first session but this time – the
#93 Viper was the quicker of the two.
The yellow and silver Pennzoil Ultra Viper ran a best time of 1:20.538
while the #91 Viper ran a best time of 1:20.573, which put them in 5th
and 6th place respectively in the GT Class. During the second session, the quickest GT Class
car was the #45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 RSR with a time of 1:19.812
so the two Viper race teams were within 8 tenths of a second of the “class of
the class”. Overall, the two Viper teams
were 7th and 8th overall in the 18 car field.
Monday test sessions, the 2013 SRT Viper GTS-R teams only participating during
the later run with the #93 Pennzoil Ultra Viper once again being the quicker of
the two. With a best lap time of 1:20.434,
the #93 team improved on their best time from Sunday’s practice – once again
sitting within 8 tenths of a second of the #3 Corvette that lead the class in
this session with a time of 1:19.769.
The #91 Viper turned in a strong time of 1:20.822 but that was a touch
slower than the Forza Viper’s best time the day before. The Vipers were 7th and 8th
in the GT Class along with sitting 17th and 18th in the
27 car field.
The field will
take the team later today so stay tuned to DodgeForum.com for more coverage of
the final event of the 2012 American LeMans Series featuring the 2013 SRT Viper