De Ferran dominates Utah ALMS race

De Ferran Motorsports claimed its second American Le Mans Series race win in succession with a commanding performance by Simon Pagenaud and Gil de Ferran at Miller Motorsports Park

De Ferran dominates Utah ALMS race

The team benefited from getting into a clear lead at the start while its main rival Highcroft Acura was held up for several laps by the Intersport Lola.

Just as he had at the Utah track last year - when he battled past all the Audis, Acuras and Porsches to lead the race - Jon Field used the advantage gained from his turbocharged car at high altitude and on the very long start/finish straight to blast up the order at the start, claiming second by the first corner.

By the time Highcroft's Scott Sharp had got past Field, the De Ferran car was 20 seconds ahead. That gap grew further when the Highcroft car was slightly delayed at its first pitstop, and by the chequered flag Pagenaud's margin of victory was over a minute, as the team celebrated the first anniversary of its debut race in fine style.

Acura completed a one-two-three and a clean sweep of prototype class wins as Fernandez Racing's Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz brought their LMP2 Acura home in third.

That result looked unlikely in the first stint, as Diaz was pushed back to seventh overall and the LMP2 rival Dyson Lola-Mazdas ran first and second. But the #16 Dyson car lost several laps with electrical problems mid-race, and Marino Franchitti and Butch Leitzinger in the #20 entry ended up behind the Fernandez car after making a late fuel stop - their rivals having opted to save fuel and not make a third pit visit.

Leitzinger closed right in on Fernandez on the final lap as the Mexican tried to lap Smith in the delayed second Lola-Mazda, but ultimately Dyson missed out on a first class win of 2009 by 0.585s.

Corsa Motorsports' hybrid Ginetta-Zytek made a promising debut, running with the LMP2 cars early on and settling into fifth place before difficulty getting the car re-fired after a pitstop dropped Johnny Mowlem and Stefan Johansson down the order.

The #45 Flying Lizard Porsche of Patrick Long and Jorg Bergmeister took a straightforward GT2 victory, edging clear of the #87 Farnbacher Loles Porsche throughout. The Risi Ferrari came back through to third after being assisted into a spin by one of the Rahal Letterman BMWs at the start.

Martin and Melanie Snow came out on top in the new Challenge class for invited GT3 Porsches, which has been added to the grid from this round onwards to ensure fields remain at an acceptable level during the economic downturn.

Pos Cl Drivers Car Time 1. P1 de Ferran/Pagenaud Acura ARX 02a 2h46m14.913s 2. P1 Brabham/Sharp Acura ARX 02a + 1m13.693s 3. P2 Fernandez/Diaz Acura ARX-01B + 3 laps 4. P2 Leitzinger/Franchitti Lola B09 86 Mazda + 3 laps 5. P1 Field/Field/Ducote Lola B06/10 + 10 laps 6. P2 Dyson/Smith Lola B09 86 Mazda + 11 laps 7. GT2 Bergmeister/Long Porsche 911 RSR + 13 laps 8. GT2 Henzler/Lieb Porsche 911 RSR + 13 laps 9. GT2 Melo/Kaffer Ferrari 430 + 14 laps 10. GT2 Farnbacher/James Panoz Esperante + 14 laps 11. GT2 Pastorelli/Stuck Porsche 911 RSR + 15 laps 12. GT2 van Overbeek/Neiman Porsche 911 RSR + 16 laps 13. P1 Mowlem/Johansson Ginetta-Zytek 09HS + 16 laps 14. GT2 Mueller/Milner BMW E92 M3 + 18 laps 15. GT2 Hand/Auberlen BMW E92 M3 + 20 laps 16. GT2 Feinberg/Hall Dodge Viper + 21 laps 17. Ch Snow/Snow Porsche 911 GT3 + 21 laps 18. GT2 Murry/Robertson/Robertson Doran Ford GT-R + 22 laps 19. Ch Parker/Skerlong Porsche 911 GT3 + 46 laps 20. P1 Lewis/Willman Lola B06/10 + 63 laps 21. Ch Hoaglund/Faieta Porsche 911 GT3 + 66 laps 22. Ch Baker/Cosmo Porsche 911 GT3 + 21 laps 23. Ch Brown/Sweedler Porsche 911 GT3 + 23 laps 
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