Judging by the performance so far at Sebring, it looks like the Honda Performance Development ARX-03a of Mucle Milk Pickett racing will be the car to beat in the rest of the American Le Mans Series season. For most of the race the HPD car has been running a strong third to the two leading Audi R18s and even now is only down one lap. A second ARX-03a run by the JRM team is running fourth.
What's interesting is that this is basically a four year old design. The ARX-03a is an evolution of the ARX-01e thattook to second overall at Sebring last year. That car was an update of the ARX-02a the same team used to win the LMP1 class in 2009 when it still carried Acura branding.
The elimination of the P1 class from ALMS in 2010 meant that Highcroft went back to an updated version of the original ARX-01a P2-class car that the team had run since the Acura/HPD prototype effort began in 2007.
Even now, the car still bears a strong resemblance to its forebear. The fact that the ARX-03a and the P2 class ARX-03b remain so competitive in their sixth year of competition is a testament to the fundamental goodness of Nick Wirth's original design.
#americanlemansseries #hpd #hondaperformancedevelopment #sebring12
2009 Acura/HPD ARX-02a
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