Taking a long list of positives from the recent event at Lime Rock, the DeltaWing Racing Cars team turns its focus from tight and twisty to the fast and flowing Canadian Tire Motorsports Park for this weekend’s American Le Mans Series Mobil 1 Sportscar Grand Prix.
The DeltaWing experienced some of the most competitive moments in its short history during the race at Lime Rock, starting 12th and passing other prototypes to reach as high as seventh early in the event. Andy Meyrick and Katherine Legge look forward to continuing the revolutionary car’s forward progress, knowing that neither car nor drivers have competed on the historic Ontario road course before (though Legge ran a Bridgestone event on the school circuit back last year).
Both Legge and Meyrick left Lime Rock secure in the knowledge that the speed was there for the DeltaWing, that all it will take is putting all the pieces together – the Élan engine, the Bridgestone tires. It’s close, so both are hoping that CTMP (still affectionately referred to as Mosport) is the spot for that elusive complete game.
“We made leaps and bounds forward with the car at Lime Rock, in terms of speed and handling,” said Legge. “So we have a positive outlook going into this race. We know what we need to do to fix the issues that we had at Lime Rock. We also have made great strides with the tires – and the Bridgestone team has been terrific.”
“Lime Rock was a huge positive for us,” agreed Meyrick. “To be battling with LMP2 cars at the start of the race and to get the performance out of the car that we did through practice and qualifying was brilliant, especially compared to where we were at the start of the season. I’m really happy with the team and I know they’ll take the steps that they have to in this short turnaround to Mosport. It’s tough, but that is the beauty of the ALMS, that we leave a tight, twisty circuit like Lime Rock and go to somewhere like Mosport two weeks later.”
Since neither Legge nor Meyrick has driven the track before, so what do they plan to do ahead of time to learn the circuit’s tricky layout?
“You can play on iRacing or rFactor, you can watch videos on YouTube and you do the track walk,” Legge related. “And you learn it when you drive it – after about three laps, you know where you’re going. Then it’s just a matter of getting used to it.
“It’s a legendary track. I can’t wait to drive it. It’s in one of the most peaceful settings; it’s so beautiful up here. And the fans are so knowledgeable and great fun. It’s one of the most iconic tracks that the ALMS races on.”
“I just speak to people who have been there before,” said Meyrick.” I’m very close friends with David Brabham, he’s raced there a lot and has mentored me, so he’s a good source of knowledge. And you can watch videos on YouTube, see on board cameras and such. It seems like a push/pull sort of circuit, very fast, so it should be well suited to the DeltaWing. I think the things we learned at Lime Rock and in our testing should have us well placed here.”
The DeltaWing embodies a new era of eco-friendly technological advancement, with nearly half the weight, aerodynamic drag, horsepower and fuel consumption of its competitors. Last year, Popular Science magazine awarded the DeltaWing a spot on its "2012 Best of What's New" list and Automobile magazine named it the 2013 “Racing Car of the Year.”
The Mobil 1 Sportscar Grand Prix from Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in Ontario, Canada will be race number five on the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron schedule. The race is the second of three events that will be televised live in the US on ESPN2, at Noon EDT on Sunday, with ESPN3.com providing the international broadcast. Live qualifying will be on ESPN3.com at 3:30pm EDT on Saturday.