JVO and ESM are back and fast

July 2, 2016

JVO and ESM are back and fast

July 2, 2016

patron_poleThey won the Rolex 24 at Daytona, triumphed in the 12 Hours of Sebring and now Patrón ESM want to add a third major North American endurance race win to their record.

They kicked off in the best possible way today at Watkins Glen when Johannes van Overbeek scored the pole aboard the team’s Honda-powered Ligier.

While the team have been using the Ligier chassis in the FIA World Endurance Championship, very little of the package remains the same. For Watkins Glen the team face a switch to different tires and revert back from Nissan to using Honda power.

van Overbeek stopped the clocks at 1:35.207  to beat Mazda Racing’s Tristan Nunez to the pole by a mere 0.167 of a second.

“The crew did the work. The ESM Patrón guys put together a great car,” van Overbeek said.

“It’s been nice since the first session. So it was a matter of subtle improvements. I knew we had the possibility of getting the pole and I didn’t want to let the guys down, so I just closed my eyes and hung on.”

The ESM squad is contesting the full FIA WEC in 2016 as well as the North American Endurance Championship in the US – Daytona, Sebring, Watkins Glen and Road Atlanta.

But for Californian racer van Overbeek, he is enjoying the chance to race back in the US after spending an entire month in Europe with his family as the ESM team prepared for Le Mans.

“I joked earlier that it’s nice to go to a restaurant and be able to read a menu,” van Overbeek said.

“It’s great to be back, the last time I was here was a win in 2003. After the success in Daytona and Sebring we’re in the hunt for the North American Endurance Championship so we’re hoping to grab some more points to win it.”

In the PC class Renger van der Zande took his first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship series pole. The Dutchman had previously scored a pole in the American Le Mans Series but today was his first IMSA pole.


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