Falken Tire Runs the Gauntlet at Miller Motorsports Park Race

15 Jul, 2010

TOOELE, UT – Falken Tire, a leader in high performance technology, overcame tremendous odds after its Porsche 911 GT3 RSR caught on fire during practice on Saturday, and was rebuilt overnight and back on the grid for Sunday’s Larry H. Miller Dealerships Grand Prix at Miller Motorsports Park.  Despite starting from the rear of the field, Porsche Works and Falken team driver Wolf Henzler, and his partner, team driver Bryan Sellers, managed to secure 9th in GT, 17th overall, in round four of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron.

Sellers was at the wheel Saturday morning when the rear of the car caught fire. He pulled into pit entry and exited the car as smoke moved from the rear of the car toward the front. The team replaced nearly every component from the seats to the rear of the car including suspension, bodywork, engine and mounts, brake parts and numerous other pieces.  “It was an amazing team effort,” declared Rod Everett, Falken team manager.  “Everyone pulled together and we were successful in getting the car repaired and approved by ALMS officials in order to race today.  We considered it a victory to have the Porsche competing as well as it did, considering what it looked like a little more than 24 hours ago.”

“Racers do indeed produce miracles,” added Mark Richter, Falken’s Senior Manager, Dealer Marketing, who supports the company’s motorsports efforts.  “The crew finished most of the rear rebuild Saturday afternoon and Bryan shook it down Sunday morning and reported the Porsche felt fine.”

This was the first race following the break for the Le Mans 24 Hours and the GT class continued to be extremely competitive.  The Team Falken Porsche was strong, but could not race close enough to eventual GT class winner Risi Competizione’s Ferrari 430 GT, which finished 9th overall.  Positions 10-16 also were GT competitors.

“We’re as prepared as any other team,” added Everett.  “We just need a little luck on our side.  We’ve got everything else – a great car, two excellent drivers, a superb crew and a strong tire, the Falken Azenis Racing Slick.  After the gauntlet we ran through at Miller, the next race should be a cake walk.  But of course, we never take anything for granted.  It’s all about skill, determination and technology. We’ll move forward.”

“I’m really proud of our team,” stated Andrew Hoit, Director of Marketing, Falken Tire.  “Through such adversity, Team Falken proved it could rebuild and compete. Our team is tough and this experience only adds to our tenacity and desire to compete.”

Team Falken will get its chance soon enough.  Round Five is ALMS Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park, July 23-24.
To learn more about the Falken Tire American Le Mans Team visit www.wegetyougoing.com

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