STUART, Fla. (July 18, 2013) – Flashing back to memories of one year and one race ago, Extreme Speed Motorsports (ESM) channels that energy to charge ahead with a specific goal this weekend – to greet the checkered flag first and enjoy the podium celebration during the Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park (CTMP).
ESM took first place points in Canada last year and again last week at Lime Rock Park – both times without celebrating on the top step of the podium.
Last July at CTMP, ESM earned its first win in team history and driver Johannes van Overbeek celebrated his 100th American Le Mans Series (ALMS) presented by Tequila Patrón start. At last year’s event, Sharp and then co-driver Johannes van Overbeek were awarded the win after the first place finishing car was excluded for a technical infraction following a post-race inspection.
At the last round at Lime Rock Park Guy Cosmo was pushed off course while leading late in the race by the Level 5 entry of Ryan Briscoe who was penalized post-race. ESM got the first place points, but not the first place trophy.
Since that initial win one year ago, ESM achieved several other firsts: first pole (Virginia International Raceway), a win at daunting Petit Le Mans (Road Atlanta) and a team-best finish of second place in the drivers’ championship points standings. The team leveraged that momentum from 2012 and launched themselves into 2013 with a brand new P2 program.
After that quick transition into P2 in March, ESM found success when they led laps at the season-opening Sebring race, earned the team’s first 1-2 finish at Long Beach, a third-place finish at Laguna and dominating performance at Lime Rock. The Florida-based team views the north of the border track as a launch pad for the 2012 season and this year, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park should be the turning point for ESM this season.
Scott Sharp and Guy Cosmo, co-drivers of the No. 01 Tequila Patrón Honda Performance Development (HPD) ARX-03b, find themselves a mere three points out of first place in the ALMS P2 drivers’ championship standings and are determined to take lead away from the competition this week. Following the late-race incident at Lime Rock Park, Sharp and Cosmo want to make a statement of their own at the 2.459-mile circuit. The duo is charged and ready to conquer the competition and rightly secure a win that they were robbed of less than two weeks ago.
Ed Brown and van Overbeek, co-drivers of the No. 02 Tequila Patrón Honda Performance Development (HPD) ARX-03b, are looking for their second podium finish of the season this weekend. Although new to the P2 race machine, Brown and van Overbeerk have quickly adapted to the machinery and have exceeded their goals. The driving duo seeks to steadily improve upon their results and return to the podium for ESM’s second double-podium finish of the season.
Following the first four rounds of competition, Brown and van Overbeek are tied for fifth. As a team, ESM is ranked second, just three points out of first place. With every race, ESM gains more momentum, earns more points and closes on the competition. The team and No. 01 drivers are within striking distance to take the points lead in both categories.
The two-hour, 45-minute Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix is the fifth round of the 10-race ALMS championship and takes place on July 19-21. Qualifying for P2 cars is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 20. Live coverage of qualifying begins at 3:20 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 20 on ESPN3.
The race is set for noon ET on Sunday, July 21 from the 2.459-mile circuit in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. The race will be streamed live at www.espn3.combeginning at 11:45 a.m. (ET). Race coverage begins at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 21 on ESPN2.
SCOTT SHARP“Mosport is one of my favorite race tracks. It is one of the classic tracks on the ALMS circuit – it is rare to find a track that’s this fast with huge high-speed corners. We’re talking fifth gear almost flat out through corners. That’s non-existent these days. It is always super-thrilling to race there and putting a qualifying-type lap together at Mosport is so on the edge that it is probably one of the ultimate thrills in car.
“I commend everyone at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park for all the work they’ve done. A lot of people were worried that they were going to change the track and take some of those thrilling sections away. All they’ve done is increase the safety aspects of it, the run-off areas and the administration side. Certainly they’ve raised the profile of the track, so I think it is going to be good for everyone involved.
“Mosport has been a wonderfully good track to me in the past. I think it has been good for us at ESM. We’ve run well there every year. We’re continually learning more and getting more competitive. We’re heading into this race with super-high hopes and expect both cars to get a strong finish and keep chasing down these points.
“We are three points out of the lead but there’s a long ways to go too. I’m excited about our position at the moment, but we realize there’s a lot of racing left. We’ve got to keep running consistent. If we can keep learning, each step of the way and making improvements, we’re going to get more and more competitive.”
ED BROWN“After a few test sessions during the break and getting our heads wrapped around these P2 cars, we are absolutely ready for this race. The team has worked hard to get everything with the P2 program running and we’re looking forward to a highly-competitive race this weekend.
“Last year my Johannes made his 100th start and made one of the most memorable passes of the season. I think it is time that the No. 02 car is back on the podium and ESM gets that first place finish in Canada. We’re ready to be back on that podium alongside Scott and Guy this weekend and Mosport is definitely the place we want to do it.”
JOHANNES VAN OVERBEEK“Mosport is one of the classic tracks in North America, if not the world. It's a challenge to drive but also very satisfying to get right.
“The Patrón P2 car should be an absolute ticket ride around there; fourth and fifth gear corners and a resulting high average lap time will put our necks to the test.
“The 02 plans are to run an aggressive race, stay out of trouble and see where we end up. Ed and I are very motivated to improve upon our best finish of the year. Stay tuned!”
GUY COSMO“Mosport (Canadian Tire Motorsport Park) seems to be a great track for us. In the past few years we’ve shown great speed, competitiveness and strong results there.
“By combining the momentum we gained from the break with the testing we’ve done and the dominant performance we had at Lime Rock, we’re coming into this weekend at full force. It’s going to be a great run for the championship this season."
Further information:Susan Pollack
Extreme Speed Motorsports
Phone: +1 313 434 6912
Email: susan@sjp- media.com