Pirelli and Aston Martin on the podium of the "Portland Grand Prix"

Portland (USA), 23 July 2006 - Second and fourth places are the results achieved by the Aston Martins DBR9 on Pirelli P Zero Racing tyres in the sixth round of the 2006 American Le Mans Series, the "Portland Grand Prix". After the Anglo-Italian cars had scored two consecutive victories, matters became complicated from the start at Portland, Oregon, where IMSA - which manages the American GT series - decided to reduce the limitations placed in recent months on the Corvette C6-Rs, literally giving the U.S. coups wings.

The track, more slippery than most and less than 3.5 kilometres long, did not simplify the task of the official DBR9s of Enge-Turner-Piccini and Sarrazin-Lamy on their new evolution tyres from Pirelli Competizioni. The latter started well and immediately slotted in behind the leading Corvette driven by Gavin-Beretta, but then it was slowed by a puncture that obliged Lamy to complete almost an entire lap with a deflated tyre. Not respecting one of the race's regulations - the pit stop supervisor joined the mechanics during the tyre change - cost a further delay to Aston Martin number 009, which rejoined the race down among the back markers.

Lamy, who went back into the race with a new set of P Zero Racings, pulled out all the stops to climb back up the field in an effort to cut the delay caused by his double pit stop. Darren Turner stayed on the tail of the Corvettes, lapping up to two seconds faster than the American cars and overtaking C6-R number 3 in the closing stages of the race.

Stphane Sarrazin, who put up an excellent performance at Portland, said, "The Pirelli P Zero Racing tyres on my DBR9 were extremely consistent in their yield and able to offer a good level of torque on a track that was as slippery as soap. I am pleased with the result, even if we were, obviously, unable to repeat our success of last Saturday at Salt Lake City. But with the latest evolutions of both car and tyres, I believe I can make good again as early as the next race at Elkhart Lake in a month's time".

Paul Hembery, Director of Pirelli Competizioni, remarked, "I am pleased with the more than evident progress made by our P Zero Racing on the official Aston Martins. Certainly, the advantages conceded to the Corvettes complicated the situation, but I still think the DBR9s can get back to winning soon. From the technical point of view, I would like to underline the optimum level of grip the new Pirelli slick delivered on a slippery track like Portland, where the temperature of the asphalt was constantly around 40C".

For more information and pictures on Pirelli's motorsport activities visit: www.pirellicompetizioni.com

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