Starting from 11th, driving the No. 02 Extreme Speed Motorsports Patrón Ferrari 458GT, Guy charged to the front of the GT field in only 23 laps. With 30 cars lapping the 1.53 mile Lime Rock Park circuit in under a minute, Cosmo was putting on a driving clinic at the American Le Mans Series Northeast Grand Prix. In the end, the only thing that could stop Cosmo was an overaggressive move by an LMPC car.
Cosmo lead the collision filled race for nearly 38 laps prior to pitting for a driver change.
“It was our race," said a frustrated Cosmo. "The ESM boys gave me a great car after we struggled a bit on Friday. We were quick enough to drive up through the field and our strategy got us into the lead. Once we were there, we were able to stretch out a nice gap. It was a picture perfect race for us at that point."
Co-driver, Ed Brown had a great stint keeping the car in the top five. Employing brilliant race strategy and catching a perfectly-timed yellow flag, Brown headed back to pits and Cosmo climbed back in the Ferrari.
“We had a big enough lead that when we pitted to put Ed in, he was able to get up to speed quickly and keep himself on the lead lap. He did a really great job and then the yellow came out perfectly in time for us to satisfy his minimum requirement and get me back in with enough fuel to finish."
Back behind the wheel, Cosmo picked up where he'd left off picking his way through the field. With the race winding down and only eight minutes remaining, Cosmo was knocking on the door of the third and fourth placed Corvettes. As he approached the Downhill section and last corner before the front straight, Guy signaled to the LMPC car following him not to pass. The LMPC driver disregarded the signal and made contact with the No. 02 Ferrari sending it spinning into the barriers at turn 7.
“I signaled to let him know that I didn’t want him to pass me there," said Guy. "This was on the entry to The Downhill on the final corner. We all have a code of conduct out there and when somebody moves over before the entry of a corner, that’s a signal saying, ‘Don’t pass me here,’ He’s a prototype, I’m a GT, he could have waited literally two seconds later and passed me down the front straight blindfolded. But instead, when I turned in, he hit me in the right rear. He had no chance in the world of getting by me at that point."
The car was unable to continue under its own power which dictated the race be ended under a yellow flag. The damaged Ferrari was returned to the garage on a flatbed truck.
“The car is so badly damaged that we are going to have a problem getting this car repaired for the next race," added Cosmo. "This is an extreme disappointment. Instead of bringing home our best finish yet for the 02 team after a dominant performance, my crew will be thrashing to repair this car in time for the next race. We’ll move on to the next one, but I don’t know what kind of piece we’re going to have by then.”
“It was a hard hit," Guy noted. "It hurt. But I’m okay. I’ll be a little sore tomorrow.”
The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón next heads north for Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. The two-hour, 45-minute race is scheduled for noon ET on July 22 from the 2.459-mile, 10-turn Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. ESPN2’s broadcast featuring live coverage begins at 1 p.m. ET. Full coverage is available starting at 11:45 a.m. ET on ESPN3.
Guy Cosmo, 2005 American Le Mans Series Rookie of the Year drives the No. 02 Extreme Speed Motorsports Patrón Ferrari. Cosmo is a race record-holder at Mid-Ohio (for fastest lap in the GTC series, which he set in 2009 in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup). Cosmo has 38 starts in the American Le Mans Series, finishing in the top-five 18 times and has been on the winner’s podium twice. In addition to being an accomplished driver, Cosmo is also a highly sought-after driving instructor. You can find out more about Guy Cosmo at http://www.guycosmo.com or follow Guy through the racing weekend on Twitter @guycosmo and on Facebook.
The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón is the world`s leading sports car championship and is recognized as the Global Leader in Green Racing. In the tradition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, multiple classes of cars - purpose-built prototypes and production-based Grand Touring automobiles - race on the track at the same time to create compelling race action and constant passing. All cars in the Series compete using one of five approved alternative fuels or energy sources: clean sulfur-free diesel, cellulosic E85 or E10, Isobutanol and electric hybrid technologies. The Series has more automobile marques involved than any other major race series in the world as manufacturers develop relevant technologies on track that transfer directly to the customer showroom. The ALMS competes at North America`s premier road racing tracks and selected temporary street circuits in major urban markets.