From Maison Blanche
A conversation with Lola Cars Sales Manager, Nick Jordan, this afternoon confirmed that the Knighthawk Racing MG-Lola announced earlier today will be at Sebring.
The chassis is the same one that was tested at Sebring last December by Jonny Kane. As well as the opportunity to further develop the already rapid sportscar, the test was used as a demonstration of the new car for some very interested American sports car teams, one of which was Knighthawk Racing.
"It was a really good test," said Jonny. "The EX257 went very quickly, and our best lap was quicker than the time set by Audi earlier this (last) year. This was achieved on well-worn tyres and with at least two-thirds of a tank of fuel on board.
"Our two days at the circuit were very encouraging. The balance on the car was the best we've ever had and I believe we could have gone even faster. We were able to continue with further development work on the car following our successful outing at Estoril, where we were testing engine and tyres. It was good to get lots of miles on the car. The Sebring circuit is very bumpy but the car behaved admirably.
"This level of performance shows again that the MG Lola EX257 is a very quick car and I look forward to developing the programme further."
A little more about the team:
Knighthawk Racing acquires first privateer MG Lola - 8th February
KnightHawk Racing, runner up in the 2001 American Le Mans Series? LMP 675 Championship, announced today that the team has acquired the first MG Lola 675 LMP to be provided to a privateer team by Lola Cars International, the UK based designers and manufacturers of the trend-setting prototype racecar.
KnightHawk owners, Steve Knight and Mel Hawkins, campaigned a previous generation Lola B2K/40 in the ALMS 675 Class in 2001. "We wanted to build on our 2001 success with Lola and AER (the engine builders), and aim to move on to win the 2002 ALMS 675 Championship. We also have unfinished business at the Le Mans 24 Hour race in June, where we raced last year. Now in 2002, we will be in France with a package capable of winning overall ? and that was also a factor in our choosing the MG Lola," said co-owner and driver Steve Knight.
The MG Lola is powered by a 2.0 liter, turbocharged, intercooled AER/MG engine. The car, designed by Lola Cars International in England, is the most technologically advanced sports car ever built. Capable of reaching a top speed of over 220 mph, the car recently set a new record for lap times at Sebring International Raceway. The car's main characteristics of high power, light weight and maximum fuel economy give the car a decided advantage in long distance races and will provide KnightHawk Racing with the opportunity to capture overall wins at every race venue.
Lola Cars Sales Manager, Nick Jordan, said, "We have worked with KnightHawk now for some time, and Lola are always impressed by their organisation, enthusiasm and race performances. Now with the MG Lola, the team has set itself a whole new horizon, and our engineers will be working very hard to assist KnightHawk, in both testing and races".