Endurance and development specialist Shane Lewis enters the final weekend of the 2003 American Le Mans Series [ALMS] season the way he entered it, with a grueling endurance race.

Lewis will close-out his fifth season of ALMS competition with the 10 hour/1,000 mile Petit Le Mans.

The Road Atlanta race acts as a bookend to the season-opening 12 Hours of Sebring and the mid-season 24 Hours of Le Mans. The triad creates three of the most important and widely recognised sports car events in the world.

Lewis, who drove the #63 ACEMCO Automotive/ Yokohama Tyres Ferrari 360 GT Modena into the lead at Le Mans before an engine failure took his team from that position two hours later, was recruited by the ACEMCO team at Sebring and helped give the team its two highest ALMS GT class finishes to-date with a fifth at the June 'sprint' race at Road Atlanta and a fourth at Canada's Trois-Rivi?res street course.

Lewis will again be joined by Terry Borcheller. Darren Law also joins the driving staff for Saturday's 11.30 am [local time] start.

"To be honest, we know we aren't going to outrun the Porsches or the Risi Ferrari on outright speed," said Lewis while at the 2.54 mile facility testing. "Road Atlanta is too fast for that. So, just like we did at Le Mans, we're going to rely on the Ferrari to run consistently for the full 1,000 miles and on the ACEMCO guys to make the right moves in pit lane.

"The drivers will get all we can out of it on the track. This Ferrari is a great car, a very reliable car. It's hard to wear down the Porsches but, that is what we are going to try and do. We want to take this ACEMCO Ferrari out on a high note."

Beyond his duties in the ACEMCO Ferrari for this weekend's ninth-round of the ALMS season, Lewis will compete for the second time in the STRANA Tonka Super Truck Series.

He will race in Friday's Tonka Super Truck Celebrity Challenge event at 4.40 pm [local time]. The 30-minute race for charity will utilize race-built semi-truck style vehicles, designed to compete in a full schedule of events in 2004. The 17-time 24 hour race participant will compete in the name of the Children's Mobility Fund.

The Children's Mobility Fund helps to buy wheelchairs and walkers as well as provide other opportunities to give children who have been bedridden the chance to add mobility to their lives. The charity is dear to Lewis who recently auctioned off a specially painted helmet for the charity.

"If you would have told me two years ago that they'd be racing big trucks at Road Atlanta I would have probably just laughed and said it'll never happen. But, since they announced the STRANA series, I've wanted to drive one of these... bad. Driving this truck down through the 'Esses' should be unbelievable. The crowd is going to get a great show. I'm also especially excited about being able to race for The Children's Mobility Fund. I've been blessed my entire life with being very mobile, and I came face-to-face with losing my leg a few years ago. Helping kids get mobility, a little freedom, in their lives is important to me."

Picture credit: Rick Wilson.



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