Lime Rock Park - American Le Mans Series, 2007
Oh look! It's the fourth of July, so it must be time for the ALMS New England Grand Prix race at Lime Rock Connecticut:
Jackie & I once again were coordinators for the Chevrolet Corvette Corral. It was off to the northland for the festivities.
We went to the track on Thursday to help unload the cars that Chevrolet sent to put in the corral. We had a 2007 Genuine Corvette Accessories car:
.. a 2007 Atomic Orange Z06, a Z06 pace car used at Pocono:
..and a 2008 Jet Stream Blue Convertible. What a great showing of Corvettes.
On Friday we got there early to open the corral since the parade laps were to be at noon and we anticipated a large crowd. All of my volunteers were there and ready to work:
Amy Manardo from GMR Works was there to keep everything running smoothly:
We had them sign waivers so they could get on the track:
After that we lined up for the drive:
As we waited to get on the track, we had to pull over to the side to let this wreck go to the pits:
We were allowed to take three laps of the track and all had a great time:
Along the way we saw where our boys get to hang out during the race:
I was fortunate enough to drive the 2008 convertible and have to tell you that the 436hp is quite a thrill to drive:
The baffled exhaust sounds pretty good from inside the car with the top down. Harlan Charles tells me that the system is programmed to have a little bit of back pressure when you let off. Whatever, it's cool.
After the pace laps, the participants were treated to a seminar:
.. from a representative from VP Racing fuels:
.. who told us about their product and gave away a few prizes including five gallons of racing fuel. After learning about the fuel, we were informed about the tires from Michelin men. No not the "Michelin Man":
A little later in the afternoon the sky opened up and we had a deluge of rain:
I was concerned that the race car drivers would not be able to hold their Celebrity Car Show or autograph session, but the clouds broke:
..and they arrived right on time. As you can see, each picked a car he liked:
.. and then, after a drink:
.. signed everything the crowd could bring:
Even during off times the drivers seem to be strategizing for the race to come:
Look! Even Harlan Charles waited his turn to get his helmet signed:
Then it was time to bring them back down the hill to the paddock. I know, it's a tough job, but someone had to do it:
"Come on Johnny, we have to go!":
We had lunch on both Friday and Saturday along with cold drinks all weekend. These, along with the closed circuit TVs, made for a very enjoyable weekend at the track. If there is a race in your neighborhood, you should look into the corral.
Saturday was the day of the race and the corral was a sell-out, so parking was a bit of a challenge, but all worked hard and we fit all the participants. As you can see there were two other corrals at Lime Rock, the Porsche corral:
I have to say we had more people and much more FUN!
The ALMS has a tradition that they have an autograph session in the paddock area for all the drivers for all the cars. We sent some of our volunteers down to help. Debbie looks very official:
.. and, see, Amy even found time to change into her black Corvette Racing shirt:
The drivers even found time for a little refreshment:
They proceeded to sign many items:
The guys always take time for the kids; here Robin Pratt & Johnny talk to some children:
After the session it was time for the race. The guys prepare for battle:
Here is D.J. (our favorite brownie lover):
By the way, the Corvette crew won the Pit Crew Challenge and it was said that our brownies made the difference.
Meanwhile back at the corral, Harlan Charles gave a seminar and all were glued to every word about the Genuine Corvette Accessories and of course the 2008 models:
Without being sexist, this is a pose only a guy would make:
As you may or may not know, the GT-1 class has only Corvette running in it for now. Therefore, it's a two-car race between teammates. There are rumors that Aston Martin will join the class and perhaps another car or two, but for now it's just Corvette. That being said, it was still an exciting race with all the other classes and the two Corvettes trying to be first in class:
The Number 4 car finished first and the Number 3 was second.
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