The DeltaWing GT racecar chassis and production concepts are making their real-world debuts at Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. While the company isn't promising future competition, the racer begins testing later this year.
Petit Le Mans
The 16th Petit Le Mans Powered By Mazda, in the final year of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón, was run on Saturday. Even though many of this year's championships had already been decided, the last ALMS race ever would be a 10-hour, 1,000-mile slog around Road Atlanta to get names in the record books and decide a few series trophies.
It was a tumultuous year for the Nissan DeltaWing. After garnering the support of sponsors and fielding one of the most unique race cars in recent history, the team suffered an early crash at the 24 Hours of Le Mans that saw them sidelined during the remainder of the car's debut race. Likewise, a collision during qualifying at Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta put the team at the back of the pack for the race. Even so, the car managed to fight its way through the field of competitors to place fifth
After being sideswiped at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June and suffering a a similar accident during a practice session last week, the Nissan DeltaWing was in danger of becoming known for its crashes more than its racing prowess or unique appearance. That's why we hoped the racecar, competing in only its second race, would finish the 1,000-mile endurance madness of Petit Le Mans.
The American Le Mans Series headed to Braselton, GA this past weekend for the 15th annual Petit Le Mans and the conclusion of its 2012 season. While some of the championships had already been decided earlier in the season – the Corvette team had already captured the manufacturer, team and driver championships for the GT class prior to the race, for example – there were still several titles up for grabs. The Muscle Milk Pickett Racing team, having dominated much of the ALMS season in
The 15th running of Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta is slated for this weekend, and there promises to be plenty of exciting racing in the last event of the American Le Mans Series. Despite being dropped from the World Endurance Championship in favor of the 6 Hours of Bahrain, the field of cars remains bountiful thanks to the European Le Mans Series joining in and making the 10-hour endurance race its series finale as well.
After first watching the scary crash of the Nissan DeltaWing at Road Atlanta yesterday, we were worried that the one-off racecar wouldn't be ready for Petit Le Mans on Saturday. We needn't have worried, though, as the car has been quickly repaired by the Highcroft Racing Team in plenty of time. In fact, the car will be running in the night practice session later today and in the practice and qualifying sessions tomorrow.
Yesterday, we caught word on Twitter that the Nissan DeltaWing had crashed during testing for this weekend's Petit Le Mans. Now Nissan has provided us with some frightening footage of how the incident went down. The important thing is that driver Gunnar Jeannette is okay, but this is yet another setback for Nissan and its radically experimental prototype racecar.
Fate has been cruel to the unique little Nissan DeltaWing. Already an outcast because of its odd shape, the experimental prototype was unceremoniously ran off the road in its inaugural outing last June during the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It's followup to that unfinished effort is supposed to be this weekend's Petit Le Mans race, the season finale of the American Le Mans Series in which the DeltaWing will be participating next year. But word from the Twitterverse is that the DeltaWing has crashed aga
The racing world has not seen the last of the DeltaWing. Nissan's dart-shaped moldbreaker was last seen at Le Mans in June, where the prototype racer was accidentally taken out of competition by a Toyota prototype. Driver Satoshi Motoyama famously tried in vain to resuscitate his damaged racer for 45 minutes, a struggle that has since been labeled by many as one of the most heroic and touching "agony of defeat" moments in motorsports history.
Rain didn't cut this year's Petit Le Mans short. Unlike last year's race, racers went carbon-fiber fender to carbon-fiber fender for the full 1,000 miles at Road Atlanta during the running of the 2010 Petit Le Mans. By the time the checkered flag fell, Peugeot walked away with a one-two win, effectively establishing a French dynasty in the American Le Mans series. As you may recall, Peugeot took the overall win at last year's Petit Le Mans as well, beating out arch-diesel-rival Audi in the proce
Last we checked, Road Atlanta was a famed professional 2.54-mile racetrack, not an oversized autocross layout on a training skidpad. Somebody may need to remind Mini USA, as the maker of famously small cars has just announced the "track" (their word, not ours) for its overly-publicized "Rumble on the Racetrack" (their title, not ours) challenge pitting the Mini Cooper S against the race-bred Porsche 911 Carrera S.