Acura made history by becoming the first manufacturer to win the LMP1 and LMP2 drivers’, team and manufacturers’ championships in the same year.
Patrón Highcroft, Monterey, California, at the Laguna Seca raceway.
The American Le Mans® Series season came to a victorious end this month as Acura made history by becoming the first manufacturer to win the LMP1 and LMP2 drivers’, team and manufacturers’ championships in the same year. To top it off, Gil de Ferran, driver and team owner of de Ferran Motorsports, announced his retirement from professional racing earlier this month and he finished off his career in dramatic fashion.
The last race of the season was held in Monterey, California, at the Laguna Seca raceway. Coming into the race, both LMP1 Acura cars were in the hunt to cement their place on the team championship podium. The Acura LMP2 team, Lowe’s Fernández, had already clinched the team and manufacturers’ championships two weeks before but still made history by winning their eighth LMP2 victory this year, tying them with the 2007 Penske Racing team for most class victories in a season.
For the fifth time this season, Acura swept the race, with de Ferran placing first overall, Lowe’s Fernández coming in second and Patrón Highcroft rounding third. As a result, Acura took home the ultimate prize, the 2009 LMP1 Manufacturers’ Championship. Patrón Highcroft took home the 2009 LMP1 team championship crown even after a horrific crash that forced them to rebuild a new Acura ARX back in September.
Acura, which entered the American Le Mans Series only two seasons ago, has clearly made a name for itself as a powerhouse in the racing world. We congratulate all three Acura teams and their drivers, who bravely competed this season and made 2009 a year to be recorded in the history books.