09-17-13

MacNeil and Bleekemolen Head to Inaugural ALMS Race at COTA

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TAVARES, Fla. - Cooper MacNeil and Jeroen Bleekemolen are taking their No. 22 WeatherTech Porsche to the inaugural American Le Mans Series race at the Circuit of the America's (COTA) in Austin, Texas, Sept. 19-21.

MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill) and teammate Bleekemolen (Monte Carlo) are looking forward to putting the WeatherTech Porsche on the newly constructed 3.4-mile, 20-turn rolling road course located 20 minutes from downtown Austin. The duo is leading the ALMS GTC standings by a mere six points. For Bleekemolen this will be his first visit to COTA, MacNeil raced at the circuit last November in Ferrari Challenge.

"COTA is a special track because of how new it is to everyone," MacNeil said. "It is also quickly making a name for itself, hosting Formula 1, Moto GP, and now the ALMS. My favorite part of the circuit would be the high speed esses, because of how fun they are to drive through fast. The slow corners before the long straights are what we need to focus the set-up of our WeatherTech Porsche on this week. It will be a great race and every point counts. We just took over the points lead and we need to focus on maximizing our finishing positions to keep the points lead."

Bleekemolen spent last weekend in Australia driving the No. 97 Tekno Autosports Holden Commodore in the Sandown 500, finishing 12th. Bleekemolen took the time to glean as much information from his Australian teammate Shane van Gisbergen about COTA as the V8 Supercars ran at the circuit in May.

"I don't know the track yet, apart from seeing it on TV," Bleekemolen said. "But I like to go to new tracks and the challenge to be on the pace right away.  The V8 guys have told me many great stories about COTA. They all loved it - having a race in the US and going there. They can't tell me too much about driving the track, as our Porsche and a V8 Supercar handle very different. It looks like a great facility, one of the nicest tracks in America. From what I've seen it will be cool to drive. I think the track will be much closer to a lot of the modern F1 tracks than the other U.S. tracks we race. I'm used to racing at both and generally like both. It has lots of run off and looks like a very safe track to me, something you can expect from a new circuit. Still I hope it's not too 'clinical'. Many old school U.S. tracks are a great challenge because you won't get away with mistakes. But I'm going to COTA open minded and hope the track will blow me away."

Alex Job, team owner, is looking forward to the new track.

"This will be the first new natural terrain road course we have visited since New Jersey Motorsports Park," Job said. "The track has already hosted a Formula 1 event, so I am expecting a billiard smooth surface, something we don't see much of on our schedule. We are going from the roughest track on the schedule in Baltimore to probably the smoothest we will see. We will need to rethink our set-up and do our homework better than the rest of the GTC field. Cooper has race laps there in Ferrari Challenge, so he will be coaching Jereon a little this weekend."

The American Le Mans Series race at Circuit of the America's in Austin, Texas will run Sept.19-21. The television broadcast from COTA will air Sept. 22 at 1:00 pm EDT on ESPN 2, live streaming can be viewed Sept. 21 starting at 3:45 pm EDT on ESPN 3.com. Live qualifying can viewed Sept. 20 at 2:40 pm EDT on ESPN 3.com.

Alex Job Racing is one of the most successful teams in sports car racing with 70 wins (since 1995); including two Rolex 24 GT Class wins in 1999 and 2013. This record is supported by 48 pole positions and 106 podium finishes.   The team has won four championships (GTC 2012, GT in 2004, 2003 and 2002) complimented by their two GT class wins at Le Mans. The team also boasts nine Sebring 12-hour wins.  

The ALMS GTC category is specific to one of the most popular factory produced racing cars in the world, the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. Developed for Porsche's one-make series around the world, the new version of the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup is based on the road-going 911 GT3 RS. The power unit featured in the new 911 GT3 Cup is largely identical to the production engine of the 911 GT3 RS with the same output of 450 bhp and the same maximum engine speed of 8,500 rpm.

WeatherTech Racing 2013 ALMS GTC Results

Event

Drivers

Qualify

Finish

Sebring

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

Von Moltke

2

1

Long Beach

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

1

4

Laguna Seca

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

1

3

Lime Rock

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

2

5

Mosport

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

1

1

Road America

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

6

2

Baltimore

MacNeil

Bleekemolen

1

2


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FloorLiner MacNeil Automotive, headquartered in Bolingbrook, Illinois, has long been recognized by the discerning automotive enthusiast as a supplier of accessories of unparalleled quality. In addition to the WeatherTech brand, the company supplies products to many automobile manufacturers (OEM) as an original equipment supplier. In fact, MacNeil currently supplies accessories to all four German manufacturers of luxury automobiles as well as a host of other automobile manufacturers worldwide! More information can be viewed at www.weathertech.com.

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For more information about AJR, visit www.alexjobracing.com, or visit our fan page on Facebook by searching WeatherTech Racing.