Saturday (12:30 PM FS2 ET) Sprint for Chevrolet Grand Prix
Detroit, Mich. (30 May 2017) – Mustang Sampling Racing drivers Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi are ready to hit the streets of Detroit this weekend as the 2014 and 2015 IMSA WeatherTech champions look to build on the podium momentum from their run to third place with the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R in Texas last month.
After starting the 2017 IMSA campaign from pole position at Daytona International Speedway, the Barbosa-Fittipaldi duo have taken three podium finishes out of the first four races of the season.
Those events have seen the team work hard to make the most out of every weekend, which has featured different race distances as well as different circuits—everything from the Rolex 24 At Daytona opener to the street sprint at Long Beach in April.
The Detroit event will carry on that street sprint theme as IMSA once again hosts a 100 minute dash to the flag on Saturday afternoon (LIVE, FS2 12:30 PM ET).
The 2.35-mile Detroit circuit spends most of the year as a park, exposed to the wide range of weather that Detroit experiences through the four distinct seasons in Michigan. When the park is converted to a track each year, it translates into a bumpy circuit, one of the bumpiest on the calendar.
But despite not being billiard table smooth, the track is one that drivers relish. And for Barbosa, it is a place that has been a big part of Action Express Racing history, having led a team 1-2 finish at the track in 2012.
“It has a little bit of everything,” offered Barbosa. “There are some slow sections and some 90 degree corners that are normal with street circuits, but there are also some very fast parts to the track which of course we all love! There is a lot of good aerodynamics with the Cadillac and the reactions are very quick with this car, so I’m looking forward to getting back there this weekend with the Mustang Sampling Cadillac.”
In addition to a winning team background, there is no question about the speed that the duo brings, with Fittipaldi taking pole position in the race last year on the way to a runner-up finish with the No. 5 Mustang Sampling DP.
With the all-new IMSA WeatherTech DPi regulations fueling a faster set of Prototype class machines, the pace of the event is expected to be even quicker than it was last year.
“It is going to be exciting to get back to Detroit and see how well our Cadillac DPi-V.R goes on this track,” said Fittipaldi, who also raced IndyCar in Detroit before moving to IMSA. “The Cadillac DPi is faster than what we’ve raced with in the past and this track has some good fast sections so I am looking forward to getting going on Friday. Our team has had some very good days at the Detroit Grand Prix and it is always important to do well with the event being so close to GM! Hopefully we can add to that history there with a big day on Saturday.”
The Mustang Sampling duo should enjoy a warm Detroit reception, having helped to promote the event with some in-market appearances. The visits gave the drivers a chance to not only see the progress that Detroit has made as a community, but to also get an eye on what the circuit will look like this weekend.
“I actually like that it is bumpy there, and it is an interesting layout,” said Barbosa. “There is a good mix of speeds and corners, and it has a very good flow. The race is fast, and you have to be flat out all the time and push 100%.”
Friday, June 2, 2017
8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. IMSA WeatherTech Practice 1 (Prototype/PC/GTD)
1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. IMSA WeatherTech Practice 2 (Prototype/PC/GTD)
4:55 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. IMSA WeatherTech Qualifying (Prototype/PC/GTD)
Saturday, June 3, 2017
8:00 a.m. – 8:20 a.m. IMSA WeatherTech Warm-Up (P/PC/GTD)
10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. IMSA WeatherTech Drivers’ Autograph Session – Picnic Shelter 3
12:40 p.m. Chevrolet Sports Car Classic IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race
The three-time and co-defending IMSA TPNAEC Champion, João Barbosa returns to Action Express Racing to drive the familiar #5 gold, black and white Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R seeking his third IMSA WeatherTech Championship at the pinnacle of North American sports car competition. João resides in Ormond Beach, FL with his wife and two sons. He is an avid runner and cyclist.
Filipe joins the defending Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup and two-time IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship winning No .5 MustangSampling Cadillac Dpi-V.R for the 2017 endurance races: Rolex 24 at Daytona, Twelve Hours of Sebring and the season finale, Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. Filipe resides in his hometown of Cambria, Portugal.
Two-time IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Champion driver Christian Fittipaldi returns to Action Express Racing for his fifth full season of competition following a third consecutive Tequila Patron’ North American Endurance Cup Championship with co-driver João Barbosa. Outside of sports car racing, the Brazilian satiates his need for competition by racing in mountain bike and karting events, both in the U.S. and his home country of Brazil.
About Mustang Sampling
Mustang Sampling, LLC is the innovator of Analytically Accurate® solutions within sample conditioning systems. We provide custom solutions of products and services globally to the Natural Gas, Natural Gas Liquids (NGL), and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) industries. Mustang Sampling continues to pioneer integrated control systems, allowing our customers to maintain phase stability from sample extraction at the pipeline through sample analysis. Our products are continuously improved and subjected to the highest quality standards which provides our customers with the best sample conditioning solutions.