Photo by John Thawley ST. PETERSBURG, FL March 30, 2007 In qualifying today for the second race of the American Le Mans Series season and its first at the St. Petersburg venue, Dyson Racing qualified sixth and seventh in the LMP2 class with their two new Porsche RS Spyders. Racing on a temporary course along Tampa Bay that includes runway G24 of the Albert Whitted Airport, this is the first of three shared race weekends with the Indy Racing League. The top ALMS qualifiers were less than a second off the morning pace of the open wheel contingent.
"The qualifying session was cut in half after a car went into the tires in turn four and the remainder of the session was spent clearing the track," said Chris Dyson. "Both Guy and Butch were held up by traffic on their fast laps. Plus our tires had over pressured in the afternoon heat, and both cars came in and had just gone out for another run when they red flagged the session. We did not have a chance to show our true qualifying speed."
"We were three seconds faster in qualifying than during the morning session," noted Peter Weston, race engineer. "We took our Sebring set up and stiffened it and lowered it to get more into the aero window. It is a fast, high downforce track. There are some sweepers that are three or four corners together that become one at speed and make for an interesting challenge."
Added Andy Wallace, "It is a very smooth and fast race track. It is a real thrill to drive around since you are so low, and you have walls on either side and you are threading a needle. It is like a video game a video game with reality thrown in. When you are not in traffic, on your own on a clear track, it is a fantastic feeling."