Back to 2001 and Sears Point, that great little track across the bay from San Francisco for the X-Factor Grand Prix of Sonoma. Emanuele Pirro leads Dindo Capello in the werks Audi R8s, but by the Chequered Flag, the positions were reversed. A decent crowd turned out to witness the contest, a typically competitive affair in the American Le Mans Series during the early years.
John Brooks, January 2015
Every once in a while, if you are lucky, you witness a performance on the track that takes your breath away. For example, I look back to Sonoma County in July 2000. Allan McNish, still smarting from not being allowed to fight for the top step at La Sarthe, put on a display that crushed the rest of the field. By the time the Wee Scot handed over his Audi R8 to co-driver Dindo Capello, he had lapped the opposition. That list included two factory BMW V12 LMRs and two works Panoz LMP-1 Roadster S entries, oh and Emanuele Pirro in an identical R8. I struggle to remember such a dominant display.
Here is Allan on lap two already pulling away from the other Audi, with the Panoz pair shadows in the distance and who knows where the BMWs were?
Days in the Sunshine…………………California Dreaming.
John Brooks, December 2012
Summer of ’99, Didier Theys in the Doran Lista Racing Ferrari 333SP crests Turn 2 at Sears Point Raceway. One of my favourite cars on a great track, a stone’s throw from San Francisco, did we appreciate how lucky we were at the time?
John Brooks, August 2012