Panoz Esperante GTLM Wins GT2 Class at Le Mans – Congratulations to Team LNT

LE MANS, FRANCE (June 19th, 2006) – While Multimatic Motorsports Team Panoz may have had an unfortunate early exit from the 24 Hours of Le Mans, there was still plenty to cheer about at the finish with Team LNT taking the GT2 victory with its Panoz Esperante GTLM.

Team owner Lawrence Tomlinson was joined on the top step of the podium by Richard Dean and Tom Kimber-Smith – recording the first victory and first podium result for a Panoz at Le Mans. LNT is the European distributor for the Panoz marque.

The success capped off the perfect father’s day for Dr. Don Panoz who celebrated the 10th year at Le Mans for the Panoz brand.

In addition, Dr. Panoz was the recipient of the “Spirit of Le Mans” award by Le Mans organizers – the ACO. The award is given to key figures in sports car racing who spread the fame of the 24 Hours of Le Mans worldwide.

“We were disappointed with our own performance, but the win by LNT is a fantastic result and I am really delighted for those guys,” Multimatic Vice President and Motorsports Technical Director, Larry Holt said.

“The spirit of cooperation between our teams has been outstanding. We give each other a lot of help and it is brilliant for them to win on their home turf in Europe.

“I am exceptionally pleased for Don and Danny Panoz – it has been a dream of theirs to win at Le Mans and the result will be a tremendous boost for the Panoz brand.

“After the Multimatic win at Sebring and LNT’s Le Mans success – it has been a great year for the Panoz Esperante. We now set our sights on the ALMS championship and Petit Le Mans.”

The victory by LNT was the first non-Porsche win in the GT2 class in the history of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. In addition to the Sebring and Le Mans wins – Panoz Esperantes have also scored podium results at Mid Ohio (ALMS) in the US and Turkey and Spa in Europe (LMS).

While Multimatic Motorsports runs the factory Panoz program in North America, Multimatic’s involvement in the Panoz brand is much larger than just the on-track action.

Multimatic designed and engineered the rear sub-frame and suspension on the current model Esperante road car and supply those parts for the Braselton, GA, built car. Multimatic’s damper division Dynamic Suspensions also supply dampers for the road car.

The base engineering for the next generation of the Esperante has also been conducted by Multimatic.

Multimatic also works in conjuction with Elan Motorsport Technologies – building the complete chassis and carbon bodywork for all the Esperante GT2 race cars including Team LNT’s #80 winning Le Mans entry.