Pirelli Committed to Winning GTS Championship for Michigan Team

SPRING LAKE, Mich., Nov. 24, 2003 – It took two years but Saleen’s “Dream Team” is finally ready to challenge the big guns in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) GTS Class thanks to Jeff Giangrande and ACEMCO MOTORSPORTS as Terry Borcheller and Johnny Mowlem were confirmed today as the team’s principal drivers for the 2004 season.

Terry Borcheller, six-time sports car champion including three as a Saleen factory driver, won the 2001 ALMS GTS Drivers’ Championship in the Saleen S7R’s inaugural season by winning the 12 Hours of Sebring, earning 4 poles and setting 7 fastest laps. Most recently, Borcheller won the 2003 Rolex Cup Drivers’ Championship in Bell Motorsport’s Daytona Prototype.

Joining Borcheller is Brit Johnny Mowlem. Interestingly enough, Mowlem replaced Borcheller as Saleen’s lead factory driver in 2002 just as Saleen was awarded the contract to build the Ford GT. Recognized as one of the top Porsche drivers, he distinguished himself the year before by setting the fastest GTS lap at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in his first and only drive in a Saleen S7R. This past season, he finished second overall in the Rolex 24 at Daytona in a Risi Competizione Ferrari 360, competed in the 24 Hours of Le Mans with an ACEMCO Ferrari 360 and won Road America in the White Lightning Porsche.

After two years, the two Saleen factory drivers are together for the first time on ACEMCO’S “Dream Team” to contest the entire 2004 ALMS season and all points beyond.

“Anyone who has watched the GTS battle the last several years knows that this is where the competition is,” stated Giangrande, ACEMCO’S owner. “We’re also very aware of what the privateer Saleen S7Rs accomplished in their first two seasons of competition winning seven of eight championships, 37 of 72 races and holding the majority of the class poles and fastest lap records,” he continued. “With Terry and Johnny on board, the Saleens will once again become the fastest guns in the west.”

ACEMCO also announced that Pirelli Tires would be providing the engineering and tire support for the Saleen S7R. “Since mid-season, we studied the performance of the various tire companies in GTS and GT,” commented Giangrande. “It was fairly obvious that Pirelli had an improved product and we’re very excited about developing a winning combination with them.”

“Since 1995, Pirelli has won 7 Drivers’ and Manufacturers’ Championships each in North American sports car competition but none since returning from a one-year hiatus in 2002,” stated Peter Tyson, Pirelli’s Vice President of Marketing Communications. “We’ve been trying to build a “Dream Team” around the Saleen with drivers like Borcheller and Mowlem since our return and we can’t wait until the green flags fall for qualifying at the 12 Hours of Sebring in March.”

To that end, ACEMCO, Saleen and Pirelli will conduct an aggressive testing program over the next several months beginning with a shakedown of the first Saleen S7R next week at Willow Springs, just north of Saleen’s Irvine, Calif.-based headquarters. The team will then move east for extensive tire testing at both Sebring and Homestead in preparation for the 12 Hours of Sebring.

With more than 50 years of manufacturing experience, ACEMCO AUTOMOTIVE is a leader in the engineering, manufacture and assembly of metal stampings for light trucks, SUVs and passenger cars with three plants located in the western Michigan area. Products include frame and engine mounting components, as well as interior metal insert assemblies. ACEMCO’s Team Goal is to provide Customer satisfaction, manufacturing Excellence and quality products while Maintaining a clean, safe working environment and Continuously improving processes to ensure 100% On-time deliveries.

Pirelli Tire North America specializes in the manufacture and marketing of highperformance car, light truck and motorcycle tires and currently has three of its highly advanced MIRS (Modular Integrated Robotized System) modules in operation in a new factory in Rome, Georgia, to better serve the American OEM and Replacement markets. For more information, visit the Company’s web site at