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    Today at 3:15pm, the GT and GTS classes from the American
    LeMans Series took the track, marking the official debut of the 2013 SRT Viper
    GTS-R and the Viper’s return to racing – although things certainly could have
    gone a little better.  After the two hour
    practice session, the pair of Viper teams found themselves in the last and
    third-to-last spot in the GT Class.

    The #91 Forza Motorsport 4 2013 SRT Viper GTS-R driven by
    Kumo Wittmer and Dominic Farnbacher turned in a best lap of 1:22.891 with a speed of 98.066
    which put this team in the 11th spot in the 13 car field.  The #93 Pennzoil Ultra
    2013 SRT Viper
    GTS-R driven by Marc Goossens and Tommy Kendal had a best time of 1:23.759 with a speed of 97.050,
    making the #93 car the slowest GT Class entry during the first ever practice
    session for the new Vipers.  This isn’t great
    news but it should be emphasized that this is the first chance for the drivers
    to practice with their new race cars during a sanctioned event and with two
    more practice sessions set for tomorrow morning before qualifying – I expect to
    see some stronger times from the two Viper teams.

    Oddly,
    while the majority of the competition in the ALMS GT Class ran anywhere from 36
    to 53 laps during the 2 hour practice session, the two 2013 SRT Viper GTS-R
    teams ran far fewer laps.  The #91 team
    ran 28 laps (turning in their best time on lap #13) while the #93 team ran just
    16 laps (turning their best time during lap #11).  No explanation has been offered by the SRT
    folks but the official ALMS Twitter feed posted that at roughly 4:40pm, the #93
    was being pushed down the pit road – suggesting that the Pennzoil Ultra Viper
    may have run into some mechanical issues.
      I have contacted SRT team members but Ive not heard back as to what was the cause for the shortened practice session.

    Click here
    to head into the DodgeForum.com professional racing section
    where you will find
    a pictorial spotters guide for Saturday’s race showing all of the entered teams
    along with a list of the results from practice sessions #1 for the ALMS Mid
    Ohio Sports Car Challenge.

    Qualifying
    begins tomorrow with full coverage on ESPN3 (via the Xbox Live network) at
    12:15pm.  The race is set to run starting
    at 1:05pm on Saturday with the television broadcast beginning on ABC at 2pm
    EST.

    Stay tuned
    to DodgeForum.com for more on the Viper’s return to the world of LeMans racing!

     
     
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