Meet the Extremes
Meet the Extremes
Motorsports is not a place for the timid. After all, real race teams do not merely aspire to “make the show” or “run in the top ten.” The goals for a real race team are to win races and championships.
When former sports car, Trans Am, IndyCar and ALMS champion Scott Sharp teamed up with sponsor Tequila PatrÃ³n to launch a new ALMS GT team they made a statement, boldly naming the team Extreme Speed Motorsports.
Seeking the best competition, ESM stepped into one of the world’s most competitive classes of racing – the American Le Mans Series GT category, with a pair of PatrÃ³n green and black Ferraris 430GTs.
Putting together a new race team is a daunting task, and a new two-car team is even more ambitious. It means recruiting even more people, acquiring more equipment, establishing clearer procedures and training, and multiplying the logistical demands.
Taking on the established factory linked teams from BMW, Corvette, Porsche, Jaguar and the highly successful Risi Competizione Ferrari squad is not for the faint hearted. Yet, as the 2010 ALMS season progressed, so too did the Extreme Speed Ferraris.
The speed was quickly evident. The #01 PatrÃ³n Ferrari of Johannes van Overbeek and Sharp captured front row qualifying spots at Laguna Seca and Salt Lake City while the #02 of Guy Cosmo and Ed Brown qualified third at the season ending Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.
Heading into the season finale both cars had multiple top six finishes. The #02 had also claimed a first victory in the MICHELIN® GREEN X® Challenge.
When the checkers flew to end the team’s first season, Sharp, van Overbeek, and Dominik Farnbacher were on the podium, with a sweet second place finish in the 1000-mile Petit Le Mans classic. The team’s first podium provided an extra boost heading into a first full off-season.
With the team platform established, the 2011 season sees ESM and the veteran Risi Competizione Ferrari team in the early stages of developing the dramatic new Ferrari 458 Italias in competition. Both teams are involved in the testing and development required to extract all of the speed that Maranello’s latest has to offer.
The process of developing a new car is filled with starts and stops. There are periods of promise, moments of frustration, and a tremendous amount of hard work. It is kind of like building an Extreme new race team.