Monday, July 09, 2007

What is it like to watch the ALMS at Lime Rock?

The Corvettes sound like bass drums, like radial aircraft engines from WWII. You want them to win, just because they sound so good. The Ferraris scream, and the Porsches sound like ripping cloth. The lone Panoz, struggling in GT2, sounds like, well it sounds like it is struggling.

Lime Rock is a tight, twisty course with close clearances. Every year the spaces around the track are a little more manicured, a little wider here and there, but it remains true to its original layout. Lime Rock is a New England track, and that is all there is to it. This is no soul-less F1 plant.

It is woven among small wooded hills in former farmland. Clear running streams define the two main straights. The drivers may feel cramped, and may fight the track and the traffic (even a field of 20 cars loads the track to capacity), but it makes for good spectating. The chicane at the top of the rise, just after a full brake uphill corner, is a great place to watch the cars catch air. As the cars clip the curb, lap after lap, the red plastic markers are broken off and scattered down the track. The drivers cut the corner even closer, catching even more air. As the cars pass over, they go whump as the tires hit the pavement.

The drivers may complain, but the spectators don't. Lime Rock is a beautiful track.


1 comment:

bluetoes591 said...

Nice pics! I always enjoy watching races at Lime Rock on TV. There really isn't much in the way of passing opportunity, but somehow there is always something happening. That and the undulating and scenic track is just plain nice to look at.