AIM Autosport Team FXDD Claims Second Place at Barber with Superb Ferrari 458
Drivers Take Confidence from Excellent Braking, Handling and Tire Wear
Birmingham, Ala. (April 1, 2012) - AIM Autosport Team FXDD took second place yesterday at Barber Motorsports Park as Emil Assentato and Jeff Segal drove exceptionally throughout the 2h 45m race. The team's Ferrari 458 Italia GT Grand-Am was set up superbly to yield a combination of fine handling, superior braking and extended tire life that provided the drivers with confidence.
Assentato, who qualified the car second on Friday, was at the wheel for the opening stint. He held second place through most of his driving shift, pressuring the leader at stages, but happy to play a waiting game as he knew his FXDD Ferrari was gentle on tires and could use that to his advantage when the competition began to loose traction. As his pit window approached, Assentato was able to take the lead with a decisive pass exiting turn five. The lead was short lived as he was soon called in for the planned stop.
Co-driver Jeff Segal took over driving duties and was equally fast, but twice fell victim to odd circumstances during caution periods. A caution issued shortly after he began his driving stint should have given him excellent track position as the field headed to the pits, but the car was seventh when the pit cycle was complete.
Thanks to some exciting and skillful driving that included many passes, Segal was up to third late in the race. The FXDD Ferrari maintained top pace while competitors began to struggle on worn tires. Segal looked certain to claim second place when a full-course caution was issued. The caution was short and should have set up a two-lap fight for the victory, but circumstance had the GT leader alone and ahead of the field as the pace car picked up the DP car that was the overall leader of the race. When the action resumed, Segal took advantage of the car's braking to take second with a decisive pass into turn five. There was no opportunity to fight for the win, but the team was satisfied to see their Ferrari cross the line in second place.
AIM Autosport Team FXDD is elated that its new Ferrari 458 has claimed front-row starts for its first two races and, after eighth place in the gruelling Rolex 24, has claimed second place and looked capable of claiming a victory yesterday at Barber Motorsports Park.