Fourteen years ago, the #30 MOMO racecar, driven by Mauro Baldi crossed the 1998 Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring finish line in first place. This historic victory was part of the North American endurance racing Triple Crown that saw MOMO’s co-drivers Gianpiero Moretti, Didier Theys and Mauro Baldi win three of the most recognized endurance races in the world, the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring and the Six Hours of Watkins Glen, all in the same year.
Earlier this year, the world of auto racing lost one of its most popular stars: Gianpiero Moretti, the man who founded MOMO and helped define the term “gentleman racer,” passed away at the age of 71 in Milan, Italy.
After making a noticeable North American auto racing comeback at the 2012 Rolex 24 At Daytona with NGT Motorsport, MOMO is pleased to announce that the Italian company will sponsor the #30 MOMO NGT Motorsport Porsche 997 GT3 Cup in the GTC class of the 2012 American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón.
“Momo is thrilled to once again be part of the historic Twelve Hours of Sebring event,” announced Marc Phaneuf, General Manager for MOMO Automotive Accessories Inc. “MOMO is synonymous with racing and the Twelve Hours of Sebring and the American Le Mans Series are the perfect testing grounds, ideal for current and future development. Driver safety, and driver comfort is our first priority and our upcoming ALMS racing program will provide optimal driver feedback for current and future development. The driver feedback translates to product development and will funnel its way down to our retail customers giving them the chance to drive with the best safety products available” added Marc Phaneuf.
“MOMO was a celebrated and iconic racing brand in the 1990s. The company founder was a highly respected and fierce competitor, making our entry to the American Le Mans Series very special. The #30 colors and livery pay a great tribute to the 1998 Sebring winning car of Mr. Moretti”.
The #30 MOMO NGT Motorsport Porsche 997 GT3 Cup will be driven at the 60th annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring fueled by Fresh from Florida by Henrique Cisneros and Carlos Kauffmann from Venezuela and Sean Edwards from England. The same trio of drivers competed with NGT Motorsport in the Twelve Hours of Sebring last year and finished third in the GTC class for their first race together, a performance that did not go unnoticed.
MOMO selected one of the top North American Porsche teams, NGT Motorsport to represent the iconic brand for its 2012 American Le Mans Series program. Founded in 2004 by Ramez Wahab, NGT Motorsport won the 2011 IMSA GT3 team and driver Cup Challenge with Henrique Cisneros.
“MOMO NGT Motorsport is expecting to exceed its 2011 Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring performance this year, especially with such a great sponsor as MOMO backing us up,” announced Ramez Wahab. “The MOMO NGT Motorsport Porsche led the majority of the Twelve Hours of Sebring last year before finishing third and scoring the class track record in the race.”
In addition to the #30 MOMO Porsche 997 GT3 Cup entry in the Twelve Hours of Sebring, NGT Motorsport will enter a second Porsche 997 GT3 Cup in the GTC class, the #031 to be driven by Angel Andres Benitez Jr. and Angel Rafael Benitez Sr. from Venezuela and Nicki Thiim from Denmark. NGT Motorsport will also enter three cars in the 2012 Porsche GT3 Cup.
MOMO NGT Motorsport and its three drivers will participate in the test days to prepare for the 12 hour race on Monday and Tuesday, March 12-13 at Sebring International Raceway.
2011 IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge Champion Henrique Cisneros is excited to return to Sebring after his great success last year. “The Twelve Hours of Sebring is the most challenging race of the year,” stated Henrique Cisneros. “I am excited to be back with MOMO NGT Motorsport with the same driver line up as last year, where we earned a third place podium finish. After another year of experience under our belts, we expect to win this prestigious event this year.”
2011 Porsche Carrera Cup Vice-Champion Sean Edwards is eager to get back to America to race on the legendary Florida racetrack where he almost won last year. “It’s great to be back racing the iconic MOMO NGT Porsche again,” said Sean Edwards. “The Twelve Hours of Sebring is an amazing race, we finished 3rd there last year and definitely have unfinished business, so we are aiming for the win. The GTC category looks very competitive, but we have a strong team and driver lineup for the race and will be going flat out all the way.”
Multiple IMSA GT3 Cup race winner and pole award winner Carlos Kauffmann is also looking to join his former 2011 Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring teammates and hopefully share a win with them this year. “Being able to compete in this iconic race where we finished 3rd last year is awesome,” said Carlos Kauffmann. “Racing in the Twelve Hours of Sebring with a MOMO sponsored racecar is spectacular. I really want to enjoy the ride and help my teammates take our MOMO Porsche to the highest possible finish.”
In an effort to create an exciting “MOMO racing moment” for the thousands of fans that will gather at Sebring International Raceway, MOMO was able to secure at Sebring one of the former MOMO Ferrari 333SP prototypes raced by the late Gianpiero Moretti and Didier Theys. The two MOMO cars will be on display at the MOMO NGT Motorsport transporter during the ALMS driver’s autograph session Friday, March 16 at noon.
The 2012 American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón begins with the 60th Anniversary Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida on Saturday on March 17. The race, set for 10:30 a.m. ET and will be broadcast March 18 on ABC and shown live on ESPN3 and ALMS.com.
Follow the MOMO NGT Motorsport throughout the 2012 12 Hours of Sebring event and the ALMS season on Facebook.com/MomoMotorsport and on Twitter @MomoMotorsport