ALMS Road America: Cocker Seizes Last-Lap LMP Win for Drayson Racing

By James Fish
James Fish
James Fish
alias for Chris J
August 22, 2010 Updated: September 29, 2015

Lord Paul Drayson (C) is showered in victory lane by co-driver Jonny Cocker (L) and competitor Simon Pagenaud (R) of France, after co-driving the #8 Drayson Racing Lola to victory at the American Le Mans Series Road America race. (Rick Dole/Getty Images)
Lord Paul Drayson (C) is showered in victory lane by co-driver Jonny Cocker (L) and competitor Simon Pagenaud (R) of France, after co-driving the #8 Drayson Racing Lola to victory at the American Le Mans Series Road America race. (Rick Dole/Getty Images)
Johnny Cocker, after a race-long battle which was not resolved until halfway through the final lap, earned Drayson Racing its first prototype win of its American Le Mans Series career, beating the Cytosport Porsche across the line to win the ALMS Time Warner Road Race Showcase at Road America.

The #16 Dyson Lola-Mazda chases the Autocon Lola-AER (R) past the Patr&#243n Highcroft HPD (C) and the Cytosport Porsche (Rear) just after the start of the ALMS Road America race. (Americanlemans.com)
The #16 Dyson Lola-Mazda chases the Autocon Lola-AER (R) past the Patr&#243n Highcroft HPD (C) and the Cytosport Porsche (Rear) just after the start of the ALMS Road America race. (Americanlemans.com)
“We didn't have things go our way at Mid-Ohio, but today we did. Well done to our team,” Mowlem said on americanlemans.com.

Team owner and co-driver Lord Paul Drayson had high praise foe Cocker's effort. "We were so hungry for that win. For [Cocker] to come out and just attack, really it was inspiring. We've been driving together since 2006 and he is an
amazing talent."

The Drayson car started from the pole but lost the lead on the first lap to the turbocharged power of the Autocon Lola-AER piloted by Johnny Mowlem. The Drayson Lola-Judd, with team owner Lord Paul Drayson at the wheel, dropped to fourth.

John Field, in his Intersport Lola-AER, had to start from pit lane, after failing to qualify due to engine troubles. The team borrowed a motor from rivals AutoCon, and managed to make the start.

  Mowlem dropped out on lap 25 with transmission problems, and Jon Field made it just a few laps before retiring with engine problems, leaving the fight to the four bigger teams.

Cocker put the big Lola back in front on lap 42 after a yellow flag, but the team knew he would need to pit once more for fuel, while the other LMP cars had just enough fuel to make it to the end.

While his competition tried to conserve fuel, Cocker pushed the Drayson Lola hard, trying to open enough of a gap to have time to pit. He needed 42 seconds; he managed half of that by the time he had to stop on lap 59.

Cocker rejoined the race in fourth, determined to use his V-10 power to push his way to the front.

The Dyson Lola-Mazda ran flawlessly all day but couldn't repeat its Mid-Ohio win. (Courtesy of Regis Lefebure/Dyson Racing)
The Dyson Lola-Mazda ran flawlessly all day but couldn't repeat its Mid-Ohio win. (Courtesy of Regis Lefebure/Dyson Racing)

Traffic was dense and intense, as the class battles in GT and LMP had to share the same real estate. This helped bunch up the LMP leaders, and Cocker wasted no chances, passing Guy Smith in the Dyson Lola-Mazda on lap 61. 

On lap 65, Team Patrón Highcroft told David Brabham to turn up the fuel mixture and move on the race-leading Team Cytosport Porsche of Klaus Graf. At the same time Cocker tried to pass the Highcroft car but got into the marbles and ran off the track, dropping back to fourth. With four laps remaining, the Drayson car was almost five seconds back.

The Drayson Lola-Judd scored its first ALMS win at Road America. (James Fish/The Epoch Times)
The Drayson Lola-Judd scored its first ALMS win at Road America. (James Fish/The Epoch Times)
Cocker didn’t care; he kept charging.

“I made a small mistake behind David [Brabham], I lost a bit at Carousel [corner]. Then it was the case just to be flat out to the end,” he explained

The Drayson driver repassed Guy Smith on lap 67, passed David Brabham on lap 68, and took off after the leading Porsche with a lap-and-a-half to go.

The Porsche was in trouble: Klaus Graf was running on fumes. Two turns from the finish line, Johnny Cocker took a run on the struggling Porsche and made the pass.

Klaus Graf limped across the line in second, out of fuel. (James Fish/The Epoch Times)
Klaus Graf limped across the line in second, out of fuel. (James Fish/The Epoch Times)
“On that last lap I could see Klaus hadn't had a splash and suspected he was in fuel saving load. I was expecting to catch him, but not that amount. I think he got caught behind a [GTC] Porsche in turn 9 and the GT in 10. But I knew we had the pace to get on the rear of his car, and to get there in 12 and make it in 13.

“I knew it would be the only opportunity; if I was behind him on the straight I knew he'd be able to block me.”

Patr&#243n Highcroft's Simon Pagenaud leads Lord Paul Drayson early in the ALMS Road America race. (Patr&#243n Highcroft Racing)
Patr&#243n Highcroft's Simon Pagenaud leads Lord Paul Drayson early in the ALMS Road America race. (Patr&#243n Highcroft Racing)
Klaus Graf in the Cytosport Porsche RS Spyder held on to second, while David Brabham, in the Patrón Highcroft HPD ARX-01c, despite his best efforts could do no better than third.

"The Patrón Highcroft Racing team did the best we could today,” Brabham said in a press release. “We were saving fuel like crazy towards the end and we were really on fumes there at the end.

"To keep Dyson behind and Drayson winning overall was a better scenario for us in the championship.”

Dyson Racing hopes to return to its winning ways at Mosport. (Regis Lefebure & Dan Boyd/Dyson Racing)
Dyson Racing hopes to return to its winning ways at Mosport. (Regis Lefebure & Dan Boyd/Dyson Racing)
Patrón Highcroft maintains a 20-point lead in the championship.

The Dyson Lola-Mazda didn’t break, as it has too often this season, but it also didn’t show the speed it had at Mid Ohio.

“Our congratulations to Drayson Racing on their first ALMS win. They had a fast car and as a team they did a great job today,” said team owner Rob Dyson in a press release.

“We look forward to maintaining our strong momentum at Mosport next weekend and putting the Castrol Mazda back on top.”

The American Le Mans Series heads north for its next race, the Grand Prix of Mosport on August 29, 2010, at Mosport International Raceway just north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Tickets are available through the Mosport Raceway ticket Web page.

The race begins at 3:05 p.m. EDT. Television coverage begins at 4 p.m. on SPEED-TV in the United States

Read about the battles in GT, LMPC, and GTC: BMW Earns First 2010 American Le Mans Series GT Win at Road America

American Le Mans Series Time Warner Road Race Showcase at Road America

 

#

CL

Driver

Car

Laps

CP

Behind Leader

Behind Next

Behind In Class

1

8

LMP

Jonny Cocker

Lola B09 60/Judd

69

1

2

6

LMP

Klaus Graf

Porsche RS Spyder

69

2

-1.051

-1.051

-1.051

3

1

LMP

David Brabham

HPD ARX-01c

69

3

-4.915

-3.864

-4.915

4

16

LMP

Guy Smith

Lola B09 86/Mazda

69

4

-6.062

-1.147

-6.062

5

99

LMPC

Gunnar Jeannette

Oreca FLM09

67

1

-2 laps

-2 laps

6

52

LMPC

Luis Diaz

Oreca FLM09

67

2

-2 laps

-21.606

-21.606

7

90

GT

Dirk Mueller

BMW E92 M3

66

1

-3 laps

-1 lap

8

45

GT

Patrick Long

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR

66

2

-3 laps

-2.617

-2.617

9

4

GT

Oliver Gavin

Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

66

3

-3 laps

-2.328

-4.945

10

3

GT

Jan Magnussen

Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

66

4

-3 laps

-8.405

-13.350

11

02

GT

Guy Cosmo

Ferrari 430 GT

66

5

-3 laps

-4.348

-17.698

12

62

GT

Gianmaria Bruni

Ferrari 430 GT

66

6

-3 laps

-3.222

-20.920

13

95

LMPC

Scott Tucker

Oreca FLM09

66

3

-3 laps

-1.487

-1 lap

14

61

GT

Mika Salo

Ferrari 430 GT

66

7

-3 laps

-1.658

-24.065

15

01

GT

Scott Sharp

Ferrari 430 GT

66

8

-3 laps

-7.893

-31.958

16

44

GT

Darren Law

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR

66

9

-3 laps

-3.575

-35.533

17

17

GT

Bryan Sellers

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR

65

10

-4 laps

-1 lap

-1 lap

18

54

GTC

Jeroen Bleekemolen

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

64

1

-5 laps

-1 lap

19

69

GTC

Galen Bieker

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

63

2

-6 laps

-1 lap

-1 lap

20

88

GTC

Vic Rice

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

63

3

-6 laps

-65.403

-1 lap

21

23

GTC

Bill Sweedler

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

63

4

-6 laps

-27.028

-1 lap

22

63

GTC

Andy Lally

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

63

5

-6 laps

-17.461

-1 lap

23

28

GTC

Doug Baron

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

61

6

-8 laps

-2 laps

-3 laps

24

40

GT

David Robertson

Doran Design Ford GT

59

11

-10 laps

-2 laps

-7 laps

25

12

LMP

Tony Burgess

Lola B06 10/AER

59

5

-10 laps

-87.614

-10 laps

26

89

LMPC

Kyle Marcelli

Oreca FLM09

47

4

-22 laps

-12 laps

-20 laps

27

36

LMPC

Frankie Montecalvo

Oreca FLM09

36

5

-33 laps

-11 laps

-31 laps

28

48

GTC

Miller/Hines

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

36

7

-33 laps

-227.562

-28 laps

29

75

GT

Ryan Dalziel

Jaguar XKRS

26

12

-43 laps

-10 laps

-40 laps

30

92

GT

Bill Auberlen

BMW E92 M3

8

13

-61 laps

-18 laps

-58 laps

31

55

LMPC

Scott Tucker

Oreca FLM09

8

6

-61 laps

-0.238

-59 laps

32

32

GTC

Bret Curtis

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

8

8

-61 laps

-50.629

-56 laps

33

37

LMP

Jon Field

Lola B06/10 AER

6

6

-63 laps

-2 laps

-63 laps

 

 

 

 

James Fish
alias for Chris J