July 23, 2011
Canadian Marcelli breaks Mosport record
By Dean McNulty, QMI Agency
BOWMANVILLE -- Canada's Kyle Marcelli smashed the American Le Mans Series LMPC qualifying record Saturday at the Mobil 1 Grand Mosport Grand Prix.
Marcelli drove the No. 89 Intersport Racing Oreca FLM 09 around Mosport's 4-km road course in one minute, 11.331 seconds, besting the track record set last season by Mexico's Luis Diaz, by more than a tenth of second.
It was the first pole of Marcelli's ALMS career and it came at his home track.
It also comes just a week after the 21-year-old Marcelli, of Barrie, made his debut in Europe at Imola, Italy, where he won the Le Mans Series/ Intercontinental Le Mans Cup race.
"We brought that momentum here this weekend," he said. "What happened in Imola was wonderful. The race track was like a golf course. The whole deal was perfect. We did six hours of racing without a single full- course yellow."
As for what happened at Mosport Saturday, Marcelli said the car improved after each of two practice sessions prior to qualifying.
"We unloaded off the trailer quick," he said. "With these LMPs there is such a short window in which to make changes to get more speed, that if you make the wrong changes you get lost in a hurry."
Marcelli thought that the key to his record lap was a decision to put on fresh tires.
"We threw new tires on the car for the first time in qualifying and we found a tonne more speed," he said.
Marcelli's immediate goal is to win Sunday's Mosport GP, but he said what he has his long-term sights on is a factory job.
Not a factory job making cars, but a job with a factory team like BMW, Porsche or Corvette that would vault him to the top of the sports car racing world.
Klaus Graf will start on the overall front row Sunday, as he won the pole in the LMP1 class in the No. 6 Muscle Milk AMR/Lola Coupe B08 with a lap of 1:08.679.
In the GT class, Dirk Mueller won the pole at 1:17.083 in the No. 56 BMW M3.