DeltaWing Hopes For “Petit” Advantage In ALMS Finale

by Joe Hudson
Dr. Panoz's DeltaWing Elan will close out the ALMS era at Petit Le Mans (Credit: Kelsi Nilsson)

The DeltaWing Racing Cars team is hoping for a home field advantage this weekend as the team stay at home for Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.

This weekend will be extra special for the teams head Dr Don Panoz as he sees the teams new coupe creation make its local debut not far from team headquarters in Braselton. It is also significant to the good doctor because it will be the 16th and last running of Petit as an American Le Mans Series (ALMS) race before becoming the Tudor United SportsCar Championship, Dr Panoz was instrumental in setting up the ALMS and has overseen many thrilling races in his time including the Porsche RS Spyder domination in the mid 2000s.

Now he looks on as drivers Andy Meyrick and Katherine Legge take his creation around the track for the ten hour race: “The team has been focused on Petit Le Mans for some time,” said Legge. “This is the race we’ve worked toward all season long. It’s our home race, so there will be a lot of people cheering us on and we really appreciate that. It’s the first chance the fans will have to see the new DeltaWing coupe and that will be an attention grabber.

“It’s important to all of us that we do well, especially since this is the last ALMS Petit Le Mans. This race was the vision of Don Panoz, as was this amazing race car, and he did the same for the American Le Mans Series. It will be an emotional ending but I’m excited to see how it transitions into the new series.”

Indeed the man himself looked back on how he started the “mini” great race: “The Petit Le Mans was one of those epiphanies that came to me in the middle of the night.

“I was talking with the ACO [the Automobile Club de l’Ouest, the organizing body for the 24 Hours of Le Mans] and came up with the idea of creating our own race, a mini, or Petit, Le Mans. It has grown to become the third largest sports car race in the world. It’s very fitting that the DeltaWing coupe will be racing in the Petit Le Mans this year.”

The Petit starts this weekend October 19th and rather than bring in a third driver, the trusted driver pairing of Legge and Meyrick will share driving duties for the DeltaWing over the 10 hour/1000 mile race.

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