Casey Currie Racing–Currie starts off 2014 King Of The Hammers with a podium finish

Currie starts off 2014 King Of The Hammers with a podium finish
 
Johnson Valley, CA. 2-6-14 – Tuesday marked the first days of qualifying for the multiple races being held at the 2014 Griffin King Of The Hammers. Casey Currie qualified the Currie Racing UTV, Modified Rock Crawler and Ultra 4 on the 1.2-mile course. The course featured a high-speed start along with numerous sections of rock variations. A total of 19 UTV’s qualified for Wednesdays race, with a time of 6:14.8 that set Currie at a 14th starting position. 34 UTV’s are registered for KOH UTV race.

The UTV race course would be 120 miles of punishing terrain. Rock sections would curse numerous racers and cause bottlenecks. Currie immediately put the pass on the slower UTV’s and quickly made his way towards the leaders. By race mile 51, Currie had gained 8 positions. Gaining these spots would give Currie the upper-hand and get ahead of the major bottlenecks. Currie pushed the Monster Energy Kawasaki Teryx’s stock motor to the limits across the dry lake bed and after a grueling 6 hours of racing, Casey and co-driver, Oren, would cross the finish taking a final podium position, 3rd place.  Along with Casey finishing, brother, Cody Currie would capture a 2nd place finish in the sportsman UTV class in his #22 Kawasaki Teryx.

Today Currie will be competing in the Smittybilt Every Man Challenge and will be the first off the line as he pulled off the number 1 qualifying spot on Tuesday. The #88 Modified Crawler will be going up against 38 other competitors.

BIGFOOT in the UK!

As a firmly established part of the driver roster at Team BIGFOOT HQ in St Louis Missouri, JR brings a wealth of experience to his driving job.  He is “over the moon” to have a chance at racing for European fans all over Europe. We will bring you a more in-depth interview with JR in the coming weeks.

St. Louis, MO/Daventry, Northamptonshire, U.K. (February 3, 2014) –  For the first time ever in Europe, there will be not one, not two, but THREE BIGFOOT® Monster trucks all in one place at the same time!

European Monster Truck Racing Champion and Truckfest fan-favorite BIGFOOT #17 is joined, for the first time ever, by JR Adams driving the multi championship winning Firestone US BIGFOOT. Joining the two race trucks will be the all new for 2014 RETROFOOT 10-seater BIGFOOT ride truck.

RETROFOOT is a newly rebuilt Retro ride truck, giving its passengers the real monster truck experience. Its leaf spring suspension, which monster trucks ran for many years, reveals just how tough the sports pioneers were!  Retrofoot is Europe’s ONLY MTRA certified ride truck – just one more way that the Live Promotions team is proving that visitor safety is their top priority.

Only one team of event promoters could have had the imagination, vision, and resources to bring about an event of this magnitude.  Promoters of the hugely successful Truckfest, and BIG fans of the whole BIGFOOT Team, Live Promotions has been booking trucks from The Original Monster Truck® family for a decade.

Late in 2013, event director Bob Limming contacted BIGFOOT #17 driver Nigel Morris and said the words that would change history, “Nigel, I want another BIGFOOT truck at Truckfest this year!”  Numerous Trans-Atlantic calls between Morris and Bob Trent, BIGFOOT 4X4, Inc.’s VP of Sponsorships & Business Development, followed, resulting in this unprecedented 2014 BIGFOOT Invasion.

Casey Currie Racing–CASEY CURRIE JOINS THE BFGOODRICH TEAM IN 2014

CASEY CURRIE JOINS THE BFGOODRICH TEAM IN 2014
 
Corona, CA (February 3, 2014) — Preparing for the 2014 season, Pro Lite Champion Casey Currie welcomes BFGoodrich Tires as the newest partner to his race and lifestyle programs. BFGoodrich will support not only Currie’s racing efforts in both the Lucas Oil Off Road series and TORC series, but multiple projects off the track including his new Cruise-Race-Crawl Jeep customization program, CRC.
 
“I am very excited to be a part of the BF Goodrich team this year,” said Currie. “I won my last championship with them and I am looking forward to getting the title back! Not only have they been a big support on the racing side of things, the brand has moved in a great direction outside of racing as well, and I’m excited to move forward with them on the lifestyle side. We have a lot of fun events planned this year, and with the expansion into some new markets and some additional surprises from BFG, 2014 is going to be awesome.”
 
Returning to the BFGoodrich Team after a Pro-Lite-Championship win on the team in 2010, Casey’s racing and enthusiast-based programs go hand-in-hand with the BFGoodrich commitment to provide the highest performance tires to both racers and enthusiasts.
 
“We are excited to welcome Casey back home this year,” said Peter Calhoun, Motorsports Manager for BFGoodrich Tires. “Casey, like us, is not only about performance but also about connecting with driving enthusiasts. The partnership with Casey in LOORRS Pro Lite helps strengthen both our motorsports program, as well as our brand’s lifestyle attributes.”

Mopar Racing–Mopar in the Staging Lanes for the NHRA 2014 Season

Mopar in the Staging Lanes for the NHRA 2014 Season
Season-Long Celebration of 50th Anniversary of the Iconic 426 HEMI® Planned
 
·         Mopar kicks off 2014 NHRA season this weekend in Pomona, Ca.
·         2014 marks 50th anniversary of the introduction of the Gen II 426 Race HEMI®
·         Mopar heads into 2014 Pro Stock competition with Jeg Coughlin Jr. and Allen Johnson as back-to back NHRA Champions
·         Hagan and Beckman looking to battle for their second Funny Car championship titles in 2014 after second and third place finishes respectively last season
·         Mopar will display a heritage wall at NHRA events, provide prizes packages for fans, a new merchandise product line, and more in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the HEMI this season
 

Auburn Hills, Mich. (February 4, 2014) –With a total of four world championship titles won in the past three years, the Mopar, Chrysler Group LLC’s service, parts and customer-care brand, has plenty of reasons to be excited about the upcoming 2014 National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season which will feature 24 national race events and is set to kick-off this coming weekend in Pomona, Ca. at the historic Auto Club Raceway. Adding to the anticipation are Mopar’s plans for a year-long commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the legendary Gen II 426 Race HEMI® engine.

First introduced in 1964, a new second generation HEMI engine measuring 426 cubic inches was built specifically to win races. There were two versions– one called the “Circuit” or “Track” engine and the other the “Acceleration” or “Drag” engine.

While it made its racing debut with a win at NASCAR’s Daytona 500, that same year in NHRA competition, legendary driver Don Garlits became the first to break the 200-mph barrier with a Gen II 426 Race HEMI-powered car travelling the quarter-mile straight-line distance in 7.78 seconds at 201.34 mph. Garlits then went on to use that HEMI power to win the first of eight titles at the prestigious U.S. Nationals at Indianapolis.

Five decades later, Mopar heads into a new season of NHRA drag racing after celebrating back-to-back HEMI-powered Pro Stock world championships title in 2012 and 2013 by Allen Johnson and Jeg Coughlin Jr. respectively, along with Funny Car World titles in 2011 and 2012, earned by Don Schumacher Racing drivers Matt Hagan and Jack Beckman.

Mopar returns to Pro Stock competition this season with just two entries powered by HEMI engines tuned by Roy Johnson. Defending world champion Coughlin and teammate Johnson finished 1-2 in the points standing in 2013 and had four national title wins apiece. Both are looking to battle for the title once again this year. 

“We are really jacked up,” said Coughlin who will once again pilot the JEGS.com Mopar Dodge. “We’re ready to start the fight, and for sure it’s going to be a fight, just like every season. We’re looking at the Winternationals as Step 1 of the many steps it will take to win our sixth Pro Stock championship.

“There have been changes across the Pro Stock spectrum, not just with our team, with lots of mergers and drivers moving around so it should be interesting to see how all these moves work out,” added Coughlin. “We’re down to two cars now, so the focus will be even more intense, which should be good all the way around. The support from Mopar and the staff over there remains at a phenomenal level. It’s our job now to go out there and win them a third straight title.”

“Mopar is celebrating 50 years of the HEMI and we aim to add some more Wallys and battle hard for another Championship as our contribution to the festivities,” said Johnson. “We’re focused and excited and ready to go. Ideally we’ll be shooting to finish 1-2 again but it would be nice to do it in reverse order this time.”

In the battle for the 2014 Funny Car world championship, Don Schumacher Racing will once again have four Dodge Chargers R/T entries vying for the crown. Hagan, who won his first NHRA championship for Mopar in 2011, will premiere a new Mopar Express Lane scheme on his Funny Car this season after coming so very close to winning a second world title by finishing runner-up with nine final round appearances and five victories in 2013, the most of anyone in the class.

“2013 was a great year of us and we finished really strong with a win at Pomona in the end,” said Hagan after beating the John Force, the 2013 NHRA champion, in the final round of the season. “We won more than anyone in the class, but it’s just the way the cards fell in the Countdown.”

In contrast, Beckman raced hard without a visit to the winner’s circle in defense of his 2012 world title but still ended up right behind his teammate with a third place finish in the championship.

Fellow DSR driver Ron Capps returns behind the wheel of his Mopar for his 20th season as a professional driver after finishing sixth in the standings last season. He has had four runner-up finishes for the championship in that span, but his hope this year is to go just a step further and win that elusive world title.

The new addition to the Mopar line-up is veteran driver Tommy Johnson Jr., a nine-time national event winner in the series, who takes over from Johnny Gray who finished ninth last year for Mopar with his career best season total of four wins.

At various NHRA events throughout the season, fans are encouraged to visit the Mopar display to view a beautiful heritage wall celebrating the 50 year legacy of the GEN II 426 Race HEMI, participate in contests with special HEMI merchandise as prizes, put their signature a HEMI birthday card and much more as part of the numerous marketing initiatives and events nationwide.

As part of the celebrations, at both NHRA events and on-line at WearMopar.com, a new product line of Mopar merchandise featuring the HEMI 50th anniversary logo will be available with items that include clothing, decorative lighting, clocks, a pub table, stools and much more.

 

Summit Racing–Line Embraces Fresh Challenge as Season Begins in Pomona

Line Embraces Fresh Challenge as Season Begins in Pomona
 

Mooresville, N.C., February 5, 2014 – Jason Line and the Summit Racing team have faced and overcome many challenges during their tenure together, with a collective 105 national event wins and six NHRA Pro Stock world championships stand as testament. The group will have another opportunity to display their determined and resilient nature when they enter the 2014 season of NHRA’s Mello Yello Drag Racing Series under circumstances that have never before been a factor. For the first time in his illustrious career, Line will compete at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona at the Circle K NHRA Winternationals, the first of 24 events on the tour, without teammate Greg Anderson.

Instead, eight-time FIA Pro Stock champion Jimmy Alund will be piloting Anderson’s Summit Racing Equipment/KB Racing Chevrolet Camaro for the first six events while the decorated driver is out of the seat for the first six races for scheduled surgery to repair a bicuspid aortic heart valve.
 
“It will certainly be strange – I’ve never been to a Pro Stock race without Greg Anderson,” admitted Line. “This is something that is a priority, though. Of course, Greg didn’t want to miss any races, but the rest of us were thinking, ‘Buddy, you take care of yourself. Do what you have to do.’ It’s going to be very strange, for sure, but the Summit Racing team has been faced with plenty of challenges in the past, and this is simply another that we will have the opportunity to overcome. We look forward to Greg’s return in a couple months, and we hope we make him proud while he’s away from the racetrack.”
 
Alund, one of the most successful Pro Stock drivers in Europe, is very familiar with the KB Racing team and their equipment. In 2013, the Swedish racer won five of six events of the FIA European Championship season, was No. 1 qualifier at each race, and reset both ends of the series Pro Stock record with a KB Racing engine under the hood of his 2012 J&J Performance Camaro.
 
“It’ll be fun to have Jimmy on board,” said Line. “He has some similar traits to Greg. He’s a real go-getter with a serious drive to win, and I think we’ll learn a few things from him.”
 
While Alund drives the already-familiar blue Summit Racing Chevrolet Camaro, Line will also be in familiar territory as he slides in behind the wheel of what was formerly the silver Summit Racing Camaro. The car had been crashed at a test session last fall with Line behind the wheel but now returns to rotation repaired, ready, and with a fresh coat of brilliant blue paint to match the Chevrolet that Alund will command.
 
The Summit Racing team is rounding out the last few days of the off-season at the newly resurfaced Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park near Phoenix and putting in one final test session before making the short journey to Pomona to participate in a race that Line has won twice (2009 and 2011) and where he was No. 1 qualifier in 2012.
 
“We always like returning to Pomona, especially for this race,” said Line. “The first race of the season is a fresh page for everybody. We have some interesting challenges to deal with, but the Summit Racing team has put in a lot of hours and effort during the off-season. Hopefully, it shows.”

John Force Racing Readies for Winternationals

COURTNEY FORCE EAGER TO REPEAT AT WINTERNATIONALS

POMONA, Calif. (February 5, 2014) – The NHRA Mello Yello Series 24-race schedule begins this week with the 54th annual Circle K NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, Calif.  Defending Winternationals Champion, Courtney Force, has had one busy off season, but the 25-year-old Traxxas Funny Car pilot is looking to win this weekend, making it two-in-a-row for her Ford Mustang team.

At the 2013 Winternationals, Force qualified in the No. 1 spot and dismissed Phil Burkart Jr., Matt Hagan, Bob Tasca III, and Ron Capps to claim the title and  become just the second woman in NHRA history (after older sister Ashley Force Hood) to lead the Funny Car point standings.

“I’m excited to be going into Pomona as the defending champ in Funny Car and I absolutely cannot wait to get our Traxxas Ford Mustang back on a familiar track. It’s great coming out here because this is my home track and I’m excited to kick off the new year in hopes of taking home another win at the Winternationals,” said the youngest daughter of legend John Force.

This is her third year racing in the Top Fuel Funny Car category. The 2012 Auto Club Rookie of the Year has three national event wins under her belt, three No. 1 qualifiers and eight final rounds. In the past two years, Force has qualified for each event on the circuit and has won 53 rounds of racing on Sunday.

“It’s crazy to think I’m already going into my third year of Funny Car. Every season I learn something new and I’m eager to get back out there and see what we can accomplish this year.  Each year, I set my standards for myself a little higher and hope to continue to improve as a driver, but as a team, we have our eyes set on that Championship,” said Force.

John Force Racing teams traveled to West Palm Beach, Fla. For pre-season testing, putting them back on track to win their 19th team championship in 2014.

“We tested in West Palm Beach to prepare for the upcoming season and as a driver, I’m back at it in the gym. I’m working out to be physically prepared as well as practicing my reaction times to be more mentally prepared for getting back in the seat and driving,” said Force.

Both Courtney and her sister Brittany will take part in the NHRA press conference in Pasadena before the race weekend starts and participating in various media opportunities in the area.

“It was a long off-season so I’m more than ready to be back piloting my Traxxas Ford Mustang Funny Car. I’m eager to be back on the road and back in my routine- that’s the hardest part when you’ve been out of the seat for so long. I need to get back in, brush the dust off and hopefully pick up from where I left off in November,” said Force.

BRITTANY FORCE READY TO START SOPHOMORE TOP FUEL SEASON

POMONA, Calif. – When the 10,000 horsepower BOSS 500 engine of the Castrol EDGE Dragster fires up at the 2014 Circle K NHRA Winternationals, February 7-9, it will not be soon enough for driver Brittany Force, who is pumped and ready to climb back into the cockpit. There is also a renewed focus for the 2013 NHRA Rookie of the Year as she will be a serious player going into her sophomore season in the highly competitive Top Fuel class.   She will be rolling into Auto Club Raceway with a newly canopied Top Fuel Dragster and a new crew chief Todd Smith.

“I am looking forward to racing with Todd Smith as my crew chief. Guido (Dean Antonelli) is still working on my car and I they will work really well together. We made some good laps during testing and I am ready to get the season started,” said Force who narrowly missed the Countdown last season. 

Looking back, the 2013 NHRA Mello Yello season was a steep learning curve for the newest racing Force. “It was really great to be at the NHRA banquet and take home the Auto Club Road to the Future Award as NHRA’s top rookie, not just for Castrol, but for all of John Force Racing. It really proved all our hard work paid off in the end,” explained Brittany Force. Her consistent driving skills in handling one of the fastest accelerating vehicles on the planet proved to her competitors in the next lane that she meant business.

During the offseason, many drivers are restless and can’t wait for the NHRA season opener in Pomona. All they do is count down the days until they’re back in the seat, strapped in, throw the ignition switch and fire up their supercharged race cars ready to assault the drag strip like a guided missile. Force is just like the drivers she races against, with a competitive spirit deep within their soul that’s adrenalin fueled. “It was nice to get some down time once the season ended and hang out with my family and friends. But after a while, you start to get bored and want to get back on the track. I’m so ready and even anxious to get out to Pomona and get this season started, driving the Castrol EDGE Dragster,” commented Force.

Force, along with her fellow John Force Racing teammates, headed to Palm Beach International Raceway for the PRO Winter Warm Up last month. “It felt great to come down to Florida and test because I haven’t been in the dragster for over two months. Being out of the driver’s seat for that length of time, it feels like taking a step back,” voiced Brittany Force. “I was nervous at first but then I went back into my routine, got focused and then the nerves immediately went away.”

During testing, Brittany also had the opportunity to race her father the first time to the delight of the crowd. “It was very cool to race my dad, I wish the outcome would’ve been different.  It was pretty crazy. Just running him that one time makes me think I could never be in Funny Car. We had about 100 pep talks. I was fine going up there. I don’t ever worry or try and think about who I am running. He had me so worked up about him being in the other lane. He was just trying to help me but it was a little too much,” said Brittany Force. 

On the eve of heading into Pomona, Brittany is more determined and focused despite the challenges of Top Fuel racing. “I’m still learning something every time I get in the car, but our goal for 2014 is to qualify in the top half of the field at every event and get a few wins for the Castrol EDGE team,”  concluded Force.

Pomona is considered a home track for Force. It’s filled with childhood memories of watching her legendary father drive his Funny Cars down the sacred grounds of Auto Club Raceway to numerous wins and championships. With some luck, she will make her own history at this year’s Circle K NHRA Winternationals and pilot her Castrol EDGE Dragster to a victory.   

 

JOHN FORCE TO COME OUT SWINGING AT NHRA SEASON OPENER

POMONA, Calif. – In 2013, John Force won his 16th NHRA Funny Car championship, an unprecedented record by any stretch of the imagination. But that was last year and he knows he’ll have a bigger target on his back, even if it’s from fellow team teammates and family members Courtney Force and Robert Hight. As the Castrol/JFR Teams roll into the hallowed grounds of Auto Club Raceway for the 54th running of the NHRA Circle K Winternationals, all eyes will be on this 64-year-old racing icon, but that’s nothing new to John Force as he starts his 37th pro season. He’ll be driving his 8000-horsepower Castrol GTX High Mileage Mustang in pursuit of a 17th NHRA Mello Yello Funny Car Championship.

At the conclusion of the 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing season, the newly crowned 16-time champion tried to get some R&R with his family but it’s not always that easy. “We didn’t have much of an offseason but it did give us a chance to get caught up on business things. We did spend a couple weeks in Lake Tahoe with the family and that was nice,” said Force, the winningest driver in NHRA history. “We’re still chasing corporate America for 2015 but luckily we’re financially stable right now through the end o
f this season with Castrol, Ford, Auto Club, Traxxas, Mac Tools and others.”

As soon as the ball dropped in Times Square heralding in the New Year, John was itching to get back in his Castrol GTX High-Mileage Mustang Funny Car. Before he could slip into his fireproof suit, Force headed to the North American International Auto Show in the Motor City. Force was a guest of Ford Motor Company and took part in the “Behind the Blue Oval” media event. He mixed it up with 2012 NASCAR champ Brad Keselowski and Ford NASCAR racing legends Ned and Dale Jarret. Ken Block, Vaughn Gittin Jr., Brian Deegan and Ozz Negri were also part the Ford Racing discussion. With bloggers and members of the media firing off questions to the drivers, SCCA Trans Am legend Dorsey Schroeder had his hands full being the master of ceremonies during this standing room only event.  

From Detroit, Force hopped on a plane and headed Florida for the annual PRO Winter Warm Up at Palm Beach International Raceway. Here, he met up with his fellow team drivers Brittany, Courtney and Robert Hight, and used this event to test a variety of components in their supercharged racing machines before heading west to Pomona.  “Being down here testing at Palm Beach International Raceway gives you a head start on the season when it opens at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona. A lot of teams don’t have the budgets, they come here, run for a day or two but luckily we can test for five days,” commented Force. 

The PRO Winter Warm Up brought nitro Top Fuel Dragsters and Funny Cars to southern Florida and was a real treat for the fans. They also had had a surprise that has hasn’t happened on a drag strip in over a decade, pairing up a Top Fueler and Funny Car. “We had some fun racing Brittany in her Castrol EDGE Dragster in the final. Something the fans haven’t seen since the Winston No-Bull Shootout back in 1999 and 2000. I remember racing (Bob) Vandergriff (Jr.) in his dragster and was lucky enough to get the win despite both of us smoking the tires. I don’t know if I’ll get the chance to race Brittany again in my lifetime so it was very special,” said a thrilled Force.

 

ROBERT HIGHT GEARED UP FOR RUN AT CHAMPIONSHIP STARTING IN POMONA

YORBA LINDA, CA (February 5, 2014) — Robert Hight and the Auto Club Ford Mustang will roll into Auto Club Raceway at Pomona ready to continue the dominant streak John Force Racing has established at the season opening Circle K NHRA Winternationals. JFR has won season opening Winternationals twelve times; John Force, 6 times (most recently 2012); Robert Hight, 3 times (most recently 2011); Tony Pedregon, twice and Courtney Force, once (2013). The team has won the last four Winternationals; John Force 2010 and 2012, Robert Hight 2011, and Courtney Force 2013.

“I don’t know what it is but there are some tracks where you just feel really comfortable racing. Auto Club Raceway is one of those places. We have been able to get in the winner’s circle pretty consistently at Auto Club Raceway but we don’t take that for granted. I love racing there and there is so much excitement at the Winternationals. We are ready after a good test session in Florida,” said Hight, who finished 5th in the Mello Yello point standings.

“I know I am always excited to do well at the Winternationals because everyone starts from the same spot in the points. You want to start strong and try and get some momentum. We want to do well for all our sponsors especially Auto Club of Southern California.”

Teamed with crew chief Mike Neff for the first time at the Winternationals Hight is looking forward to a full season with the two-time Mello Yello championship tuner. Last year Hight and Neff were teamed up for the last half of the season and won the prestigious Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals as well as the NHRA Carolina Nationals.

“Getting the win at the U.S. Nationals and then starting the Countdown with a win in Charlotte were the two highlights for us last year for sure. We didn’t finish the season where we wanted to but you look at how Force got after we won and I don’t know that anyone could have stopped him and Jimmy. We are a team so we win together. Neff and I talked a lot over the off-season and we had a good tests session in Florida. We will be ready,” said Hight.

John Force Racing has won six of last eight Winternationals; Hight, 2006, 2008 and 2011; John Force, 2010 and 2012: Courtney Force, 2013. In 1999 JFR started season with eight consecutive wins; the longest consecutive win streak for team. In 2012 JFR started season with six consecutive wins.

“John got hot at the end of last season and we got hot in Countdown in 2009. We have started the season hot a couple of times but for me I want to be dominant for a whole season. You haven’t seen that in a while and I think it is because this Funny Car class is so competitive. If you go back to 2007 before John won last year there were six different Funny Car champions,” said Hight.

For Hight starting a personal win streak at the 54th annual Circle K Winternationals would start the momentum the 2009 Funny Car champion at one of his favorite tracks.

Summit Racing–European Pro Stock Champion Jimmy Alund to Drive for KB Racing on Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Tour

European Pro Stock Champion Jimmy Alund to Drive for
KB Racing on Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Tour
 
 
Eight-time FIA Pro Stock champion Jimmy Alund will be piloting a Summit Racing Equipment/KB Racing Camaro for the first six events of the 2014 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.

Alund will be driving Greg Anderson’s Summit Racing Camaro beginning with the 54th annual Circle K NHRA Winternationals, February 6-9 at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona, California. Anderson will be out of the driver’s seat for the first three months of the season due to scheduled surgery.
 
“It’s really not a big deal,” Anderson explained about his condition. “I was born with a bicuspid aortic heart valve (two valve openings instead of three). It’s something we’ve kept track of over the years, and my doctor has decided it’s time to make some repairs so I stay in good shape. I will miss the first few races of the season, but once the doctor says I’m good to go, I’m gonna be right back at it looking for another Pro Stock championship.”
 
Alund is one of the most successful Pro Stock drivers in Europe, winning championships each year from 2004 through 2009 as well as 2011 and 2013. In 2013, the Swedish racer qualified Number One at all six events of the FIA European Championships season, won five of those six events, and reset the Pro Stock ET and Top Speed records (6.534 seconds, 213.31 miles per hour).
 
Part of Alund’s winning formula was the KB Racing engine under the hood of his 2012 J&J Performance Camaro. It was that connection and Alund’s 2013 performance that got him the nod to drive the Summit Racing Camaro while Greg Anderson recuperates.
 
“I’m really honored to be a part of this organization,” Alund said about KB Racing. “I have some big shoes to fill—Greg is one of the best Pro Stock drivers in the world, bar none. I believe that I’m up to the challenge, though. I’m looking forward to helping KB Racing win another championship.”
 
“Just like Greg and Jason Line, I’m a hands-on guy—I work on my own race car alongside my team,” Alund continued. “I hope my experience will be valuable to the KB Racing team. It always helps to have a new set of eyes on the car.”
 
Alund has competed in NHRA Pro Stock Racing before, running several national events during the 2010 season. The experience gave him a taste of what American professional class drag racing is all about.
 
“In the U.S., you are running against the best of the best,” Alund explained. ”After all, this is the home of drag racing, so you expect that. We don’t race full-time in Europe like the pro teams do here, but racing is racing—we are just as competitive as the racers in America. This is a great opportunity for me to show that to American race fans.”
 
Alund will be testing in Phoenix, Arizona prior to the season-opening Circle K NHRA Winternationals. He and teammate Jason Line will begin the Winternationals with two qualifying sessions on Friday, February 7.

Honda Racing–HPD Finishes Seventh in Daytona Debut

Extreme Speed Motorsports and drivers Ed Brown, Johannes van Overbeek, Anthony Lazzaro and Simon Pagenaud recovered from early-race adversity at Daytona International Speedway to pilot their HPD ARX-03b Honda to a seventh-place finish Sunday in the prototype division at the Rolex 24 at Daytona. 

This year’s 24-hour season-opening endurance race was the first race in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, a new sports-car racing series resulting from the merger of the American Le Mans Series and GRAND-AM.  Honda Performance Development, the two-time LMP2 defending manufacturer and engine champion in American Le Mans Series competition, was represented in the new championship by Extreme Speed Motorsports, fielding a pair of HPD ARX-03b chassis and production-based Honda V6 twin-turbocharged engines. 

The Extreme Speed HPDs were two of six LMP2 entries in the new “Prototype” [P] category, which at Daytona also included the unique Delta Wing design, and 11 Daytona Prototype cars from the former GRAND-AM series, comprising a competitive, 18-car field.

The race got off to a tough start for HPD, when the #2 Extreme Speed HPD, running third as the race entered its second hour, spun and made contact with the barriers at the “bus stop” chicane, resulting in suspension and body damage.  After a long pit stop to effect repairs, the team resumed 15 laps down to the leaders.

Shortly after the incident with the #2 car, Scott Sharp spun theteam’s #1 HPD at the same location, but made no contact and was able to continue without damage.  Less than an hour later, however, the Honda-powered machine lost drive, pitted and was taken to the garage area to replace the transmission.  The long stop cost the #1 car more than an hour in repair time before returning to the race, in 16th position and 43 laps down to the leaders.

From there, Extreme Speed and HPD mounted an impressive comeback.  Triple driving stintsfrom both IndyCar star Pagenaud and endurance veteran Lazzaro – and exceptional Continental tire wear from the HPD chassis–saw the #2 Honda rise steadily through the field. The ARX-03b was scored in 12th after six hours and ninth as the race reached the 12-hour mark. 

At the same time, the second Extreme Speed HPD was conducting its own comeback.  Sharp also completed a triple stint driving the #1 ARX-03b Honda during the nighttime hours, as he and co-drivers Ryan Dalziel and David Brabham made a comeback attempt, running just a couple of positions behind their teammates as both cars advanced through the night.

Unfortunately, the race for the #1 HPD ended just before 5 a.m., when mechanical problems led to retirement in the garage area.  The #2 car, however, continued to run well, moving into eighth place in Prototype as dawn broke over Daytona International Speedway just after 7 a.m.  Matching the pace of the other LMP2 entries, the #2 Extreme Speed HPD would advance as high as seventh in the Prototype class and 11th overall as the checkers flew just after 2:11 p.m. EDT.

The inaugural 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship resumes March 15 with another endurance racing classic, the 62nd running of the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

Allen Miller (Project Leader, Honda Performance Development) on this year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona:  “It’s unfortunate that our early problems put us behind, but Extreme Speed did an excellent job of managing the recovery and both the HPD chassis and the Honda engine proved to be up to the task of taking on our first 24-hour race here on the high banks of Daytona.  While we didn’t quite have the pace of the Daytona Prototypes, we have confidence in IMSA’s ability to thoroughly analyze the data from this weekend’s race, and look forward to a post-race review of the current Balance of Performance regulations prior to Sebring.”

Simon Pagenaud (#2 Extreme Speed Motorsports HPD ARX-02b Honda) finished 8th in prototype:  “My triple stint in the car was good.  The HPD was fast and quite enjoyable in the night running; I really had a good time with the car.  We were trying to play ‘catch-up’ and we could keep improving our positionand moving up in the standings.  Overall, it went pretty well.  I think the HPD held up very well with all the mayhem out on track.  There was a lot of contact, as well as passing.  It was good racing, but certainly, it was also mayhem at times.”

Honda Racing–HPD Prepares for Rolex 24 at Daytona

The TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, a new sports-car endurance racing series resulting from the merger of the American Le Mans Series with GRAND-AM, opened Thursday at the famed Daytona International Speedway with practice and qualifying in preparation for Saturday’s Rolex 24 at Daytona. 

Honda Performance Development, the two-time LMP2 defending manufacturer and engine champion in American Le Mans Series competition, is represented in the new championship by Extreme Speed Motorsports, fielding a pair of HPD ARX-03b chassis and production-based Honda V6 twin-turbocharged engines.  The Extreme Speed HPDs are two of six LMP2 entries in the new “Prototype” [P] division, which at Daytona also includes the unique Delta Wing design, and 11 Daytona Prototype cars from the former GRAND-AM series.

Unfortunately, separate minor mechanical issues prevented both HPDs from achieving top speed during the brief, 15-minute qualifying session that set the starting field for the 24-hour contest, leaving qualifying drivers Johannes von Overbeek and David Brabham 14th and 15th, respectively, on the prototype grid. 

Both problems were resolved in time for the cars to take part in the 90-minute night practice that closedout activities Thursday at Daytona, with Simon Pagenaud posting the 6th fastest timein the #2 HPD and Brabham running 8th fastest in the #1 Extreme Speed entry.

The “twice around the clock” Rolex 24 at Daytona starts Saturday at 2 p.m. EDT, with live television coverage of the opening two hours on the Fox Network, and additional coverage throughout the race on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2.

Allen Miller (Project Leader, Honda Performance Development) on Daytona qualifying:  “Certainly it was extremely disappointing for two very minor issues to have affected our qualifying runs today.  Both Extreme Speed Motorsports cars suffered minor sensor issues that kept them from reaching top speed.  The problems were quickly rectified, but in the short, 15-minute qualifying session, it wasn’t possible to show the true potential of our cars today.  Almost anything can happen in a 24-hour race, but we’re confident we have a strong package for the weekend, and we’re looking forward to the start of the TUDOR United Sports Car Championship.”

Chevy Racing–CHEVROLET MAKES HISTORY WITH ROLEX 24 VICTORY

CHEVROLET MAKES HISTORY WITH ROLEX 24 VICTORY
Action Express leads Corvette DP sweep of overall Daytona podium
 
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 26, 2014) – Chevrolet has written another chapter in its storied motorsports history at Daytona International Speedway. A trio of Corvette Daytona Prototypes swept the overall podium at the Rolex 24 At Daytona with Action Express Racing leading the Bowtie charge. Joao Barbosa, Christian Fittipaldi and Sebastien Bourdais in their No. 5 Corvette DP gave Chevrolet its first overall victory in the Rolex 24 since 2001.
 
The winning trio was the strongest entry in the 67-car field that began the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. The No. 5 Corvette DP led 18 times for 272 laps – including the final 34 – and Barbosa posted the fastest lap of the race at 1:39.180 (129.220 mph). Barbosa held off Max Angelelli in Wayne Taylor Racing’s No. 10 Corvette DP by 1.461 seconds following a restart with 10 minutes left.
 
“Today’s winning effort in the Rolex 24 At Daytona was the result of tremendous preparation, focus and execution put forth by our Corvette Daytona Prototype teams in the inaugural race of the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship,” said Jim Campbell, US Vice President of Performance Vehicle and Motorsports. “Thanks to Action Express Racing, Wayne Taylor Racing and Spirit of Daytona Racing for delivering the top-four overall finishing positions in the prestigious race.
 
“In addition, congratulations to Joao Barbosa, Christian Fittipaldi, Sebastien Bourdais and the entire No. 5 Action Express Corvette DP team on capturing the first win for the Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype in the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona International Speedway.”
 
Campbell added: “The Chevrolet small block V8 delivered a combination of power, fuel economy and reliability all race long.”
 
Barbosa won overall at the Rolex for the second time, and Sunday marked his third career class win in the race. Fittipaldi added a second overall title to his résumé, and Bourdais won the Rolex 24 for the first time in his career.
 
After winning the last two DP engine manufacturer championships in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, Chevrolet is off to its best possible start in the new TUDOR Championship – a merger of the Rolex Series and the American Le Mans Series. After the Corvette DP of Angelelli, and Wayne, Jordan and Ricky Taylor, Action Express’ No. 9 entry placed third with Brian and Burt Frisselle, John Martin and Fabien Grioix teaming together.
 
The No. 90 Spirit of Daytona entry gave Chevrolet power the top four positions in the race. Five different Corvette DPs led the race for a total of 593 of the 695 laps.
 
“It was a tremendous victory for our entire Corvette Daytona Prototype,” said Jim Lutz, Chevrolet Racing Program Manager for Daytona Prototypes. “Not only win the race, but to finish one through four is a credit to the dedicated effort put forth by everyone involved. Out of six cars entered, other than the No. 99 that was involved in a crash, the remaining five were running at the end of the race. We had no issues with the Chevrolet engines. Just a great way to start the season.”
 
The next round of the TUDOR Championship is the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring on Saturday, March 15 at Sebring International Raceway.
 
BOB JOHNSON, JOAO BARBOSA, SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS AND CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI, NO. 5 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP – ROLEX 24 RACE WINNERS
 
THE MODERATOR:  We have our 52nd Rolex 24 at Daytona champions, the opening round of the United SportsCar Championship and the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup, No. 5 Action Express Corvette DP, Christian Fittipaldi, Joao Barbosa and Sebastien Bourdais are the drivers, owner is Bob Johnson.  Bob, let’s get your thoughts to start off as a local guy and getting another win here in this race, the second win here for you.
 
BOB JOHNSON:  Well, my first comment would be to congratulate the Wayne Taylor Racing group.  If we didn’t have competitors like the 10 car guys, this wouldn’t be nearly as much fun.  Those guys are awesome.  They give us a run for the money at every event.  So congratulations to them.  They really ran a good race today.
 
The first event in 2010 that happened to turn into a win was a ‑‑ I was probably the one that expected that the least of anybody, but this one wasn’t unexpected.  This one we expected to win.
 
Our guys have all worked extremely hard to get the win, and these guys did an awesome job, as you all witnessed.  So I’m just proud as can be that all that hard work paid off.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Let’s hear from the drivers now.  Christian, this is your second Rolex 24 victory, first since 2004.  You kind of returned to full‑time action here the last year or so with Action Express Racing.  Sum up what that’s been like, getting back to winning here again at the Rolex 24.
 
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI:  I just hope it doesn’t take me another 10 years to win again.  No, it’s been awesome.  Action, Joao, myself, Chevy, we had a great run last year, actually things Joao did when both of us were together in the car, and I think it made maybe the 9 car stronger and it made the 5 car a lot stronger.
 
I have to admit that the way things were going last year, I thought that we had a chance at the championship, although we only started driving together on race 4.  But it didn’t go our way, and this race definitely went our way.
 
I think preparation for this race didn’t start two, three months ago, it started one year ago when we left this place, and we knew exactly what were our strong points and what were our failures or maybe like weak points and where we had to improve to make the whole organization a lot stronger.
 
I’m very happy for Action.  I’m really happy for Chevy.  Joao did an okay job.  No, Joao drove like really, really perfectly the last couple of laps, Sebastien, also, Joao did very quick with us, and I guess the three of us, it worked pretty okay.  We’ll see what can happen in Sebring, but I’m definitely looking forward to the next race, also.
 
THE MODERATOR:  This is the first Rolex 24 victory for Sebastien.  He’s obviously a four‑time Champ Car World Series champion.  Sebastien, can you put into words what it means to you to win the Rolex 24?
 
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Well, you know, it’s one of these big races that you just want to put on your résumé.  I’ve been chasing Le Mans many times to get a Rolex, and that didn’t work out, so I came here.  (Laughter.)
 
Finishing second, I figured at some point they would just take pity on me or something and give me that watch, but that didn’t happen.  No, it’s just a great feeling.  Bob was convincingly, absolutely dead sure that we were going to win it, and I was scared to death because we had the team dinner on Wednesday night, and he shows up, and he’s like, we’re going to win this thing, and I’m like, oh, my God, here he goes.  Last time he did that we probably didn’t make first hour.
I was like, this is like bad, bad, bad, and he was right.  The guys were prepared.  Everybody was on top of things.  Everybody knew exactly what to do and how to do it, and the execution was perfect.  Car was reliable.  The Chevy engine in the car.  What can I say?  It’s a dream come true.  I’ve been coming here a few times already and never really had a shot, but this year from the start of the weekend and pretty much even before that, the first test sessions, through the Roar and all week we’ve been running at the front.  In these moments, you’re like, hmm, when are things going to go bad, and it didn’t.  We made it stick, and my teammates did a fantastic job.  It’s a heck of a feeling, and I cou
ldn’t be any happier.  Thanks to Action Express, Bob and Jim France because they made that possible.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Let’s hear from Joao.  This is his third class victory in the Rolex 24, his second win overall.  Obviously he was part of the 2010 overall victory here, as well, with Action Express.  Joao, congratulations.  Maybe your thoughts on seeing that full‑course caution come out with 20 minutes to go and what you had to do to make it happen.
 
JOAO BARBOSA:  I was very surprised.  Probably Max, he said he saw a lot of debris that I really didn’t see probably.  I was looking somewhere else.  I was really surprised by that caution, but it’s racing, and we just had to deal with it.  When they did the wave‑by I saw there was a car between me and Max, and I saw there was quite a bit of opportunity considering how the rules are at this point that I could have an advantage there, and I took it, and I just was able to build enough cushion to ‑‑ I don’t say it was going to be easy, but at least I had enough margin for maneuver, so I had quite a comfortable gap at the end.
Q.  You can say, well, that’s racing and you just deal with it, but you still won.  If you had been passed in that situation, would you be as diplomatic about that caution as you are right now?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Hell no.  (Laughter.)
 
JOAO BARBOSA:  I mean, we’re here, we won the race, so that’s another scenario that didn’t happen, so I don’t know if it’s worth it to be talking about it right now.  I mean, the racing is racing, and we are in the car, and we just drive the race that is happening to us.
 
It’s out of our control, and we just do the best that we can with what we have and consider the circumstances.  I mean, it worked out good for us today. Maybe some other day it won’t, but it’s the name of the game.
Q.  Joao, we had some conversations, they seem had some tough times in November.  Talk about recovering and getting here, and from a team standpoint you guys have come a long way to sit where you’re sitting.
JOAO BARBOSA:  I mean, we all say the same thing, but it’s never enough to repeat.  As soon as the rules came out, even before the new rules came out, we were already testing with some parts that could be put in the car.  As soon as the new series started, we knew what we had to work.  We did a lot of preparation and a lot of work before even the rules came out.  We were one of the cars; I think the only car that was in all the tests before this race.  We never missed a test.  The guys did ‑‑ I don’t know how they did it up in the shop in North Carolina because those guys work so hard to get us ready and prepared, especially after the little incident that we had here in November with the tire issue.  I mean, we had to rebuild the car from scratch, and we were here and we were at Sebring testing and we were everywhere.  We never missed a test just because of that.
 
It’s good, took a lot of preparation.  It’s an ongoing process, and I think finally everything is clicking and everything is working really well.  I mean, this definitely didn’t happen overnight.  The guys, they put over 12,000 hours of work since the last race.  I mean, it’s unbelievable what they have done so far.  And of course this win, it’s a great prize for them.
Q.  Your commitments in IndyCar this year, is it possible you’ll make more races?  How different is the behavior of a DP car compared to a European prototype car?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Well, yeah, I mean obviously to the first question, IndyCar is my main program.  It’s a full season.  It’s a two‑year deal with KB Racing and Chevy.  Really pretty excited about that.
 
Thankfully the IndyCar season only starts after Sebring, so I could do pretty easily Daytona and get warmed up and do the 12 hours, as well.  And then after the season do Petit.  It worked out really good.  I had a great opportunity to drive with these guys, and I couldn’t be any happier right now.  There are worse ways to start the season for sure.
 
And then more races, I don’t know.  Obviously they don’t need me on a two‑and‑a‑half‑hour event, and I can’t make Watkins Glen, so that makes it pretty easy.  I think the IndyCar schedule from the end of March to the end of August is not going to give me much room to do much else.  Just going to try and do well at what I’ve already committed and hopefully grab a bunch of wins this year.
 
I guess, you know, here the cars are very specific.  They’re very, very light on downforce.  The track is pretty slippery and particularly when the sun comes out.  It does a lot of sliding around.
 
Obviously on the European prototypes with slightly bigger tires, more downforce, the car doesn’t tend to slide as much.  But then when you go to Sebring, it wasn’t that big a difference because we’re running around I think in the 50s at Sebring, and on bad day with the Peugeot it was 48, 49.  So it’s pretty close.  The cars actually got very decent power, and with the extra downforce from the new rules, it’s pretty exciting.  The car is fun to drive.
Q.  Four years ago your car essentially was a ‑‑ I don’t want to say Guinea pig, but Bob and Jim were trying to develop the Porsche V8 engine.  You’ve made a lot of changes in a lot of ways with your people, with your cars in the last four years.  Are you amazed with the direction that you’ve wound up in and how far and how fast you’ve done it in just four years?
BOB JOHNSON:  Well, I am a little surprised with how quickly we’ve been successful, but not as many changes as you might think.  We have a lot of the same personnel, even carrying over from the Brumos days.  I mean, we have people that have been a part of the organization from the beginning of when Brumos started racing.
 
So yeah, it’s a little surprising because we have accomplished a lot in a short time, but again, it’s just because of all the hard work, and people like Gary Nelson and Elton Sawyer and Coyote and the whole organization is behind us.  When we had the problem with the car and did all the significant damage to it in November, if we hadn’t had Coyote behind us to put another chassis in place very quickly, we couldn’t have put the car together and been racing again as quickly as we did.
 
It’s part of the organization, and that’s what makes it possible.
Q.  Christian, you talked yesterday about your little hiatus to go to Brazil and start a family.  Now you’re back, and that took longer than you thought it would.  Do you feel like this is maybe a resurgence in your career or a start‑over?
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI:  Well, let’s put it this way:  I have a U.S. passport, so I’m American, also.  I intend to be here a long time.  I really enjoy this place.  I really love the country a lot.  Not only in my sports car days but also back in my IndyCar days, Newman‑Haas, Carl Haas, Paul Newman, which my partner here also drove for them like they were a very special family, and I owe a lot to them.  They gave me a lot of opportunities. And now like in sports cars and with Action and Joao and Bob and obviously like the whole team, I feel very, very comfortable, and hopefully they feel the same with me.
 
Why not?  I think sports car racing in this country is starting a new era right now, and we don’t know where this is going to lead like in the next couple of years.  But I am happy to be running together with them, extremely happy, and I’m putting all my effort into the program right now.
Q.  Touching on what you just brought up, the new era, it was a good debut for the unified series.  There’s mixed reactions on the full‑course yellow and then the penalty in the other
class.  I’m wondering, you’ve been part of other racing series and also NASCAR, if you think that maybe the way the officiating was in the final 40 or so minutes might be where the series is headed?
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI:  Well, I don’t know so much about like the penalty box.  We actually had a penalty ourselves with about three hours or four hours, six hours to go, and that definitely could have cost us the win. On the fact of the restart and where exactly should you be, I think if you’re leading the race, there’s a merit to you, to your team and to your car, so you should have an advantage.
 
It’s the same thing if you do the quickest time in, for example, the practice qualifying.  You start on the best place in the track because otherwise there wouldn’t be any sense in being like the quickest guy out there.  If you’re on pole position, you get to pick what’s the right side of the track, and you start on the best situation possible.  If you’re leading the race, I guess you should have also a small advantage so, I’m basically for that rule, and today I guess it worked our way, but maybe the next race is not going to work our way.  But I am in favor of it.
Q.  How would you guys rate the reliability and the power of the engines?  Consider when you look at your class compared to how the Fords kind of struggled throughout the course of the weekend.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Well, I think it speaks for itself, really, the Chevy power and the ECR guys did an awesome job.  They locked up the entire podium.  It was a pretty strong showing this weekend.  Obviously Ford came out with a new product, so it’s kind of to be expected that it was going to be a little bit rough around the edges.  Chevy was definitely prepared for this one, and they got the result.
 
BOB JOHNSON:  I might just add, I’m sure you’re aware; there were problems with the Chevys in testing and at the Roar, and ECR made an all‑out effort to get down here and get those problems solved.  I’m not saying that Ford didn’t make the same effort, but it paid off for Chevy.  They put a tremendous effort into it.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR, MAX ANGELELLI, RICKY TAYLOR AND JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 10 VELOCITY WORLDWIDE CORVETTE DP – FINISHED SECOND
 
THE MODERATOR:  We’re joined now by the four drivers in the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP, Jordan Taylor, Ricky Taylor, Wayne Taylor and Max Angelelli.  Let’s start with Max.  Talk if you can about the last little run to the checkered flag, if you thought you had a shot at him, and just accomplishing a podium, a second‑place result here with these guys.
 
MAX ANGELELLI:  You want me to start from the most painful time of the race, the last four laps?  I can tell you, I tried everything, adjust all I had in the car, to settle the car, to find a good balance, a good run.  I thought I had an opportunity with the two PC cars, and pretty slow on the bus stop.  Unfortunately I got caught in one of them.  But I did not have enough for him.
 
I thought I had when I picked up the car for the final two stints.  Also because, again, a lot of seconds to him.  But the final rush, unfortunately not.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Wayne, just maybe your emotions right now having, again, wound up on the podium, coming out of retirement with the well‑chronicled deal here with a long‑time friend and associate and obviously your two sons.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Firstly, I’d like to just say that it was a heck of a race.  It was an incredible weekend, an emotional weekend to be in a situation to have my kids and Max is like my oldest kid, to be together.  We’ve been around each other for the last 20 years, whatever it is.
 
And Chevrolet, Mark Kent, Mark Reuss, Jim Campbell and everybody at Chevrolet invested so much in this program, when the Corvette program first started some two years ago, that this win was for them.  Obviously I wanted to do it ‑‑ I wanted to be the team that did it first.  You know what, those guys did a great job.  They beat us fair and square, and they deserved to win, so I congratulate all those guys.
 
But really, I’m still really happy to have had this experience and to have had everybody support it so much.  It was just a great weekend.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Thanks, Wayne.  Jordan, obviously a really good run for you.  Just talk about how it went.
 
JORDAN TAYLOR:  Yeah, it was a long race for everyone, I guess.  Obviously starting off with the crash at the beginning was probably on everyone’s mind the entire race.  Hopefully Memo is doing okay.  I haven’t heard anything about Matteo, but obviously best wishes to those guys.  But yeah, the race was a bit crazy.  I think it was a unique year with a lot of drivers making questionable moves out there.  It was very easy to make a mistake and hit someone who wasn’t really paying attention.  It was easy to get caught up in other people’s trouble, and that’s kind of what happened to us this morning when a DP lost it and I had to avoid it going off the track and we had to make an unscheduled stop to clean off the radiator.  So that was a bit frustrating.  We had a clean race, almost the exact same as last year where we didn’t have one mechanical issue.  We only came in for fuel, tires and driver.  We never went behind the wall, so it’s a testament to the team and we came away with second last year and second this year.  Hopefully it’s a good trend, and we can win the championship again.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Ricky, obviously you’re returning to the team after a little bit away.  Talk about getting back with the family team here.

RICKY TAYLOR:  Yeah, it’s really cool.  It had been a year, and we had been the enemy for a year, and now I came back and I felt like the family again.  I mean, for the four of us to be up here, the relationship we have together, like Max is like our brother, and we’re always teasing my dad.  It’s just kind of weird that we’re on this big of a stage, and just us four weird guys up here.  It’s kind of cool.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Speak for yourself.
Q.  Wayne, are you done on retiring for the 27th time?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  I found out during the race that you made a statement that I was the weak link in the team, so I’m not sure if I’m going to even answer that one.
Q.  Is this news to you?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  No, no, no.  To be honest, these guys will support me in saying this, I didn’t really want to do this.  I didn’t want to make an idiot of myself.  If you drive race cars all your life you always want to be the quickest guy, and now suddenly I’m coming in being the slowest guy, buy so slow that I’m questioning should I be on the track or not.  But actually it worked out to be really good.  They put me in the car at a good time and I had a lot of fun.  But I could never ‑‑ you could never bring this moment back, and to try and make this another moment, it reminds me of a lot of racing drivers that just hang on and hang on and hang on and don’t stop when they’re getting slower, and for me this moment came, and it’s here, and I could never make this happen again.
Q.  What’s worse, finishing second or having your sons crack on you the entire race about everything involving your driving?
JORDAN TAYLOR:  That’s every day.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Ricky is a lot more gentle on me, but Jordan is really a terror.  The first thing, we got out of the car, and I said, you need to smile because we have a good result.  He said, I have nothing to smile about.  The two of them are like really different.
 
And unfortunately Jordan and I are the same, and Ricky is like his mother.  It’s quite a contrast, but that’s how it is.
Q.  Max, on
the last restart, he seemed to get a pretty good jump on you, and you had to wait until the green flew before you could go around the second‑place car.  Explain that rule, where it is you get to finally make the move to pass and chase after him and how frustrating is that to watch him pulling away before you’re even able to stomp on the gas?
MAX ANGELELLI:  Correct.  I feel that rule is really unfair because, I could just (inaudible) on the throttle wide open, a lot earlier than me for a much longer time, so he basically pulled a couple of seconds, I think, and I couldn’t do anything because the P2 car in the straight, he was wide open, as well, but I couldn’t do anything.  That was really frustrating.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Yeah, I don’t think he actually meant that it is unfair.  I think what he was trying to say is that that rule is a little strange, and it makes it even more strange if you are a DP car and you get caught with 27 GTs between you and the leader, and then the leader can accelerate as soon as the lights go off and control the start.  I wouldn’t say it’s unfair, but that’s what the rule is now, but I think it’s a rule that should maybe be looked at.
Q.  Without that rule do you think you would have had a chance?
MAX ANGELELLI:  Yes, we were very strong in turn No. 1.  That was the assigned place to try something.
Q. 15 minutes before the race, something like that, the television shot your face, and you were talking to Max on the radio.  As you mentioned, it was very emotional.  Can you maybe say what you talked to him?  Was it some kind of advice?  And it was mentioned that you were running really a family team. In case your two sons have difficult opinion setting up a car than their father, is it difficult to convince them to change their minds?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  I talk to Max a lot but he doesn’t listen every time.  I just said to him, you know, you’re the guy we think we need to have in at the end. You can make the difference.  We all decided that.
 
You know, when Jordan brought the car in, we looked like we had a car that could win the race.  Early on in the evening Max had been in that same position, and I think had passed everybody in the field.  We thought it was the right decision to be made at that time.
 
As far as the setting up the car, I just got told how to drive it, so I had nothing to do with it.
Q.  Max, I’ve got two questions.  The first is I know that the caution was your best chance to win the race, but were you surprised to see a full‑course caution there?
MAX ANGELELLI:  No, no, that happened already in the past.  No, I wasn’t surprised.  We need a yellow.  There was a lot of debris.
Q.  You’re now getting out of a car, so you sort of made way for Ricky, and you’re going to do only the endurance races.  Are you going to miss doing this all the time?
MAX ANGELELLI:  I don’t know yet.  I may.  I don’t know.  Maybe not.  He’s very happy not driving, so maybe I’ll feel the same.
Q.  Is there any chance, could you guys put together a second team?  I know Wayne wouldn’t be your co‑driver, but is that possible and you would consider a full season?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  We say that every year, and we really do want to do that, but it’s incredibly hard in this sport today to find the backing and the commercial partners that understand the business of racing.  Now with this merger, which I think is great for the sport, the short‑term is difficult because the costs have gone up so dramatically that it’s very hard to first find the budget for your first car, let alone the second car.  We’ve been working for three years to build up the assets to run it, but we’ve always made the point that we wouldn’t do it unless we had proper commercial partners and stuff.  And if we did that, obviously Max would drive and for sure I wouldn’t.
Q.  Ricky, the Richard Childress bunch seems pretty impressed with your stock car racing prowess.  Any chance you might end up doing something with those guys?
RICKY TAYLOR:  I mean, it’s a great connection, and I did like a truck test and a dirt test, and it was a lot of fun, but I think at the end of the day, it also comes down to money.  You know, I’m really engrained in sports car racing, and with the new series, it’s really a great time to continue my career here and try to build a life here rather than risking everything and going that way.
 
But I’d love to always keep that option open for road courses or whatever, have somebody just put me in a car.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Gentlemen, congratulations.  Thanks for joining us.
 
JOHN MARTIN, FABIEN GIROIX, BRIAN FRISSELLE AND BURT FRISSELLE – FINISHED THIRD
 
THE MODERATOR:  We have our third‑place finishers here today overall and in the Prototype class for the 52nd Rolex 24 at Daytona, co‑drivers of the No. 9 Action Express Racing Corvette DP, Burt Frisselle, Brian Frisselle, John Martin and Fabien Giroix.  Burt, why don’t you start us off, just take us through how it went for you guys today.  Do you feel like you kind of maybe through under the radar a little bit to get this third place?
 
BURT FRISSELLE:  Yeah, you know, I think especially with the affiliation Action Express had with Delta Motorsports this week, we definitely flew under the radar.  We had two excellent co‑drivers in John Martin and Fabien, and I won’t try to say his last name because I would slaughter it.  Anyway, I feel like we did fly under the radar, and John drove brilliantly in his times in the car, Fabian was very smart during the time, obviously when the big red flag happened and our thoughts and prayers go out to Alex.  But really, this whole weekend started to come together for us on Wednesday night.  We had a big team dinner, both cars, and we really felt like we had an opportunity to be one‑two.  One‑three was a little bit short of our goal, but, you know, we’ll take it.  I think Action Express even with the affiliation with Delta, everyone worked so hard, so well together, and we felt even back when we were testing in the beginning of this month, back in December, that we were going to have two cars capable of winning, and today we did have two cars capable of winning.  One did, and one came home on the podium.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Brian, obviously your dad raced, you and Burt raced together.  Talk a little bit about kind of the family connection and how important it is for you guys to have success together.
 
BRIAN FRISSELLE:  Well, it’s just a nice thing that we’re very blessed to be able to have success together.  Dad was on the podium here at the 24 Hours of Daytona.  He won Sebring, so Sebring is up next, so hopefully we can match his mark there.
 
You know, I’ve just got to tip my hat to the whole team, Action Express, and Delta Motorsports, just for putting together two great cars.  Both cars on the podium, both cars on the lead lap, one car wins, which is how it’s going to have to be, and also I mean, it was a tough race just because it started off with a terrible accident with a good friend Memo Gidley, and our thoughts are with him.  We know he’s already started his recovery, but it quickly puts into perspective what you’re doing out there and what really matters.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Fabien, just talk about this experience of coming here, joining this team and lining up on the podium.
 
FABIEN GIROIX:  It was fantastic for me because it was the first time I come to Daytona, and I never expect when I come to the beginning of January to make the test here, I never imagine that we can do a podium.  We had a fantastic car, great teammates who make very good job, and as a team, Action Express and Delta, Millennium Development, fantastic job.
 
THE MODERATOR:  John, your comments on a fine effort here?
 
JOHN MARTIN:  Yeah, I mean, just to back up what everyone said really, I think the whole Millennium Delta Motorsports, Action Express team have done amazing, same as Fabien.  Really it’s my first time here, first time driving the car.  So to come here and sort of run up front all day was amazing, really.  Had some good teammates, obviously Burt and Brian have been here a fair bit, so it was certainly good to have them and their experience all this week.  Thanks a lot, guys.  Yeah, it’s a privilege to be up here, really.
Q.  Burt, you said earlier you had two cars winning the race, and I think maybe you stay in this kind of standard for the rest of the season.  How identical are both cars in the setup?  I think you’re sharing information with your sister car.  And having two cars winning a race, is there any decision made before the race that you didn’t put each other out?
BURT FRISSELLE:  Yeah, I mean, basically the motto of Action Express starting back at last year was two cars, one team.  So when it comes to in terms of data sharing, our lead engineer Ian Watt, it really is a two‑car effort that’s really one team as opposed to traditional two‑car teams that are almost operating as two separate teams that share the same shop.  We have very much ‑‑ the cars roll to the track often within let’s say 100‑pound spring difference, maybe that. And very often they’re very close, and we do share everything.  And when our engineers do take different paths, we all get together and find out what’s working for what car.
 
The other thing that’s been really great about that relationship is the relationship Brian and I have developed with Christian as well over the last year, and the drivers have that same synergy, as well.  So I think we’re very lucky, and I thought it worked unbelievably with the Millennium Delta Motorsports guys to come in.  They brought their engineer David, their dad Chris, they’re basically their version of Elton Sawyer, they like to call it, they’ve got a gentleman named Simon, and those guys integrated into the team seamlessly and really ran the car.  So really it was an Action Express prepared car, crewed car, but run by their effort, and it shows that guys have been racing in Europe that haven’t come to Daytona and haven’t fought this with some guidance from Action.  They came in and did an absolute brilliant job of running it, calling it, collaborating, and we all worked well together from the start of the race to the end.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Gentlemen, congratulations.  Thanks for joining us.

Chevy Racing– Action Express leads Corvette DP sweep of overall Daytona podium

Action Express leads Corvette DP sweep of overall Daytona podium
 
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 26, 2014) – Chevrolet has written another chapter in its storied motorsports history at Daytona International Speedway. A trio of Corvette Daytona Prototypes swept the overall podium at the Rolex 24 At Daytona with Action Express Racing leading the Bowtie charge. Joao Barbosa, Christian Fittipaldi and Sebastien Bourdais in their No. 5 Corvette DP gave Chevrolet its first overall victory in the Rolex 24 since 2001.
 
The winning trio was the strongest entry in the 67-car field that began the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. The No. 5 Corvette DP led 18 times for 272 laps – including the final 34 – and Barbosa posted the fastest lap of the race at 1:39.180 (129.220 mph). Barbosa held off Max Angelelli in Wayne Taylor Racing’s No. 10 Corvette DP by 1.461 seconds following a restart with 10 minutes left.
 
“Today’s winning effort in the Rolex 24 At Daytona was the result of tremendous preparation, focus and execution put forth by our Corvette Daytona Prototype teams in the inaugural race of the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship,” said Jim Campbell, US Vice President of Performance Vehicle and Motorsports. “Thanks to Action Express Racing, Wayne Taylor Racing and Spirit of Daytona Racing for delivering the top-four overall finishing positions in the prestigious race.
 
“In addition, congratulations to Joao Barbosa, Christian Fittipaldi, Sebastien Bourdais and the entire No. 5 Action Express Corvette DP team on capturing the first win for the Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype in the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona International Speedway.”
 
Campbell added: “The Chevrolet small black V8 delivered a combination of power, fuel economy and reliability all race long.”
 
Barbosa won overall at the Rolex for the second time, and Sunday marked his third career class win in the race. Fittipaldi added a second overall title to his résumé, and Bourdais won the Rolex 24 for the first time in his career.
 
After winning the last two DP engine manufacturer championships in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, Chevrolet is off to its best possible start in the new TUDOR Championship – a merger of the Rolex Series and the American Le Mans Series. After the Corvette DP of Angelelli, and Wayne, Jordan and Ricky Taylor, Action Express’ No. 9 entry placed third with Brian and Burt Frisselle, John Martin and Fabien Grioix teaming together.
 
The No. 90 Spirit of Daytona entry gave Chevrolet power the top four positions in the race. Five different Corvette DPs led the race for a total of 593 of the 695 laps.
 
“It was a tremendous victory for our entire Corvette Daytona Prototype,” said Jim Lutz, Chevrolet Racing Program Manager for Daytona Prototypes. “Not only win the race, but to finish one through four is a credit to the dedicated effort put forth by everyone involved. Out of six cars entered, other than the No. 99 that was involved in a crash, the remaining five were running at the end of the race. We had no issues with the Chevrolet engines. Just a great way to start the season.”
 
The next round of the TUDOR Championship is the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring on Saturday, March 15 at Sebring International Raceway.
 
BOB JOHNSON, JOAO BARBOSA, SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS AND CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI, NO. 5 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP – ROLEX 24 RACE WINNERS
 
THE MODERATOR:  We have our 52nd Rolex 24 at Daytona champions, the opening round of the United SportsCar Championship and the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup, No. 5 Action Express Corvette DP, Christian Fittipaldi, Joao Barbosa and Sebastien Bourdais are the drivers, owner is Bob Johnson.  Bob, let’s get your thoughts to start off as a local guy and getting another win here in this race, the second win here for you.
 
BOB JOHNSON:  Well, my first comment would be to congratulate the Wayne Taylor Racing group.  If we didn’t have competitors like the 10 car guys, this wouldn’t be nearly as much fun.  Those guys are awesome.  They give us a run for the money at every event.  So congratulations to them.  They really ran a good race today.
 
The first event in 2010 that happened to turn into a win was a ‑‑ I was probably the one that expected that the least of anybody, but this one wasn’t unexpected.  This one we expected to win.
 
Our guys have all worked extremely hard to get the win, and these guys did an awesome job, as you all witnessed.  So I’m just proud as can be that all that hard work paid off.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Let’s hear from the drivers now.  Christian, this is your second Rolex 24 victory, first since 2004.  You kind of returned to full‑time action here the last year or so with Action Express Racing.  Sum up what that’s been like, getting back to winning here again at the Rolex 24.
 
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI:  I just hope it doesn’t take me another 10 years to win again.  No, it’s been awesome.  Action, Joao, myself, Chevy, we had a great run last year, actually things Joao did when both of us were together in the car, and I think it made maybe the 9 car stronger and it made the 5 car a lot stronger.
 
I have to admit that the way things were going last year, I thought that we had a chance at the championship, although we only started driving together on race 4.  But it didn’t go our way, and this race definitely went our way.
 
I think preparation for this race didn’t start two, three months ago, it started one year ago when we left this place, and we knew exactly what were our strong points and what were our failures or maybe like weak points and where we had to improve to make the whole organization a lot stronger.
 
I’m very happy for Action.  I’m really happy for Chevy.  Joao did an okay job.  No, Joao drove like really, really perfectly the last couple of laps, Sebastien, also, Joao did very quick with us, and I guess the three of us, it worked pretty okay.  We’ll see what can happen in Sebring, but I’m definitely looking forward to the next race, also.
 
THE MODERATOR:  This is the first Rolex 24 victory for Sebastien.  He’s obviously a four‑time Champ Car World Series champion.  Sebastien, can you put into words what it means to you to win the Rolex 24?
 
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Well, you know, it’s one of these big races that you just want to put on your résumé.  I’ve been chasing Le Mans many times to get a Rolex, and that didn’t work out, so I came here.  (Laughter.)
 
Finishing second, I figured at some point they would just take pity on me or something and give me that watch, but that didn’t happen.  No, it’s just a great feeling.  Bob was convincingly, absolutely dead sure that we were going to win it, and I was scared to death because we had the team dinner on Wednesday night, and he shows up, and he’s like, we’re going to win this thing, and I’m like, oh, my God, here he goes.  Last time he did that we probably didn’t make first hour.
I was like, this is like bad, bad, bad, and he was right.  The guys were prepared.  Everybody was on top of things.  Everybody knew exactly what to do and how to do it, and the execution was perfect.  Car was reliable.  The Chevy engine in the car.  What can I say?  It’s a dream come true.  I’ve been coming here a few times already and never really had a shot, but this year from the start of the weekend and pretty much even before that, the first test sessions, through the Roar and all week we’ve been running at the front.  In these moments, you’re like, hmm, when are things going to go bad, and it didn’t.  We made it stick, and my teammates did a fantastic job.  It’s a heck of a feeling, and I couldn’t be any happier.  Thanks to Action
Express, Bob and Jim France because they made that possible.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Let’s hear from Joao.  This is his third class victory in the Rolex 24, his second win overall.  Obviously he was part of the 2010 overall victory here, as well, with Action Express.  Joao, congratulations.  Maybe your thoughts on seeing that full‑course caution come out with 20 minutes to go and what you had to do to make it happen.
 
JOAO BARBOSA:  I was very surprised.  Probably Max, he said he saw a lot of debris that I really didn’t see probably.  I was looking somewhere else.  I was really surprised by that caution, but it’s racing, and we just had to deal with it.  When they did the wave‑by I saw there was a car between me and Max, and I saw there was quite a bit of opportunity considering how the rules are at this point that I could have an advantage there, and I took it, and I just was able to build enough cushion to ‑‑ I don’t say it was going to be easy, but at least I had enough margin for maneuver, so I had quite a comfortable gap at the end.
Q.  You can say, well, that’s racing and you just deal with it, but you still won.  If you had been passed in that situation, would you be as diplomatic about that caution as you are right now?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Hell no.  (Laughter.)
 
JOAO BARBOSA:  I mean, we’re here, we won the race, so that’s another scenario that didn’t happen, so I don’t know if it’s worth it to be talking about it right now.  I mean, the racing is racing, and we are in the car, and we just drive the race that is happening to us.
 
It’s out of our control, and we just do the best that we can with what we have and consider the circumstances.  I mean, it worked out good for us today. Maybe some other day it won’t, but it’s the name of the game.
Q.  Joao, we had some conversations, they seem had some tough times in November.  Talk about recovering and getting here, and from a team standpoint you guys have come a long way to sit where you’re sitting.
JOAO BARBOSA:  I mean, we all say the same thing, but it’s never enough to repeat.  As soon as the rules came out, even before the new rules came out, we were already testing with some parts that could be put in the car.  As soon as the new series started, we knew what we had to work.  We did a lot of preparation and a lot of work before even the rules came out.  We were one of the cars; I think the only car that was in all the tests before this race.  We never missed a test.  The guys did ‑‑ I don’t know how they did it up in the shop in North Carolina because those guys work so hard to get us ready and prepared, especially after the little incident that we had here in November with the tire issue.  I mean, we had to rebuild the car from scratch, and we were here and we were at Sebring testing and we were everywhere.  We never missed a test just because of that.
 
It’s good, took a lot of preparation.  It’s an ongoing process, and I think finally everything is clicking and everything is working really well.  I mean, this definitely didn’t happen overnight.  The guys, they put over 12,000 hours of work since the last race.  I mean, it’s unbelievable what they have done so far.  And of course this win, it’s a great prize for them.
Q.  Your commitments in IndyCar this year, is it possible you’ll make more races?  How different is the behavior of a DP car compared to a European prototype car?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Well, yeah, I mean obviously to the first question, IndyCar is my main program.  It’s a full season.  It’s a two‑year deal with KB Racing and Chevy.  Really pretty excited about that.
 
Thankfully the IndyCar season only starts after Sebring, so I could do pretty easily Daytona and get warmed up and do the 12 hours, as well.  And then after the season do Petit.  It worked out really good.  I had a great opportunity to drive with these guys, and I couldn’t be any happier right now.  There are worse ways to start the season for sure.
 
And then more races, I don’t know.  Obviously they don’t need me on a two‑and‑a‑half‑hour event, and I can’t make Watkins Glen, so that makes it pretty easy.  I think the IndyCar schedule from the end of March to the end of August is not going to give me much room to do much else.  Just going to try and do well at what I’ve already committed and hopefully grab a bunch of wins this year.
 
I guess, you know, here the cars are very specific.  They’re very, very light on downforce.  The track is pretty slippery and particularly when the sun comes out.  It does a lot of sliding around.
 
Obviously on the European prototypes with slightly bigger tires, more downforce, the car doesn’t tend to slide as much.  But then when you go to Sebring, it wasn’t that big a difference because we’re running around I think in the 50s at Sebring, and on bad day with the Peugeot it was 48, 49.  So it’s pretty close.  The cars actually got very decent power, and with the extra downforce from the new rules, it’s pretty exciting.  The car is fun to drive.
Q.  Four years ago your car essentially was a ‑‑ I don’t want to say Guinea pig, but Bob and Jim were trying to develop the Porsche V8 engine.  You’ve made a lot of changes in a lot of ways with your people, with your cars in the last four years.  Are you amazed with the direction that you’ve wound up in and how far and how fast you’ve done it in just four years?
BOB JOHNSON:  Well, I am a little surprised with how quickly we’ve been successful, but not as many changes as you might think.  We have a lot of the same personnel, even carrying over from the Brumos days.  I mean, we have people that have been a part of the organization from the beginning of when Brumos started racing.
 
So yeah, it’s a little surprising because we have accomplished a lot in a short time, but again, it’s just because of all the hard work, and people like Gary Nelson and Elton Sawyer and Coyote and the whole organization is behind us.  When we had the problem with the car and did all the significant damage to it in November, if we hadn’t had Coyote behind us to put another chassis in place very quickly, we couldn’t have put the car together and been racing again as quickly as we did.
 
It’s part of the organization, and that’s what makes it possible.
Q.  Christian, you talked yesterday about your little hiatus to go to Brazil and start a family.  Now you’re back, and that took longer than you thought it would.  Do you feel like this is maybe a resurgence in your career or a start‑over?
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI:  Well, let’s put it this way:  I have a U.S. passport, so I’m American, also.  I intend to be here a long time.  I really enjoy this place.  I really love the country a lot.  Not only in my sports car days but also back in my IndyCar days, Newman‑Haas, Carl Haas, Paul Newman, which my partner here also drove for them like they were a very special family, and I owe a lot to them.  They gave me a lot of opportunities. And now like in sports cars and with Action and Joao and Bob and obviously like the whole team, I feel very, very comfortable, and hopefully they feel the same with me.
 
Why not?  I think sports car racing in this country is starting a new era right now, and we don’t know where this is going to lead like in the next couple of years.  But I am happy to be running together with them, extremely happy, and I’m putting all my effort into the program right now.
Q.  Touching on what you just brought up, the new era, it was a good debut for the unified series.  There’s mixed reactions on the full‑course yellow and then the penalty in the other class.  I’m wondering, you’ve been part
of other racing series and also NASCAR, if you think that maybe the way the officiating was in the final 40 or so minutes might be where the series is headed?
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI:  Well, I don’t know so much about like the penalty box.  We actually had a penalty ourselves with about three hours or four hours, six hours to go, and that definitely could have cost us the win. On the fact of the restart and where exactly should you be, I think if you’re leading the race, there’s a merit to you, to your team and to your car, so you should have an advantage.
 
It’s the same thing if you do the quickest time in, for example, the practice qualifying.  You start on the best place in the track because otherwise there wouldn’t be any sense in being like the quickest guy out there.  If you’re on pole position, you get to pick what’s the right side of the track, and you start on the best situation possible.  If you’re leading the race, I guess you should have also a small advantage so, I’m basically for that rule, and today I guess it worked our way, but maybe the next race is not going to work our way.  But I am in favor of it.
Q.  How would you guys rate the reliability and the power of the engines?  Consider when you look at your class compared to how the Fords kind of struggled throughout the course of the weekend.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:  Well, I think it speaks for itself, really, the Chevy power and the ECR guys did an awesome job.  They locked up the entire podium.  It was a pretty strong showing this weekend.  Obviously Ford came out with a new product, so it’s kind of to be expected that it was going to be a little bit rough around the edges.  Chevy was definitely prepared for this one, and they got the result.
 
BOB JOHNSON:  I might just add, I’m sure you’re aware; there were problems with the Chevys in testing and at the Roar, and ECR made an all‑out effort to get down here and get those problems solved.  I’m not saying that Ford didn’t make the same effort, but it paid off for Chevy.  They put a tremendous effort into it.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR, MAX ANGELELLI, RICKY TAYLOR AND JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 10 VELOCITY WORLDWIDE CORVETTE DP – FINISHED SECOND
 
THE MODERATOR:  We’re joined now by the four drivers in the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP, Jordan Taylor, Ricky Taylor, Wayne Taylor and Max Angelelli.  Let’s start with Max.  Talk if you can about the last little run to the checkered flag, if you thought you had a shot at him, and just accomplishing a podium, a second‑place result here with these guys.
 
MAX ANGELELLI:  You want me to start from the most painful time of the race, the last four laps?  I can tell you, I tried everything, adjust all I had in the car, to settle the car, to find a good balance, a good run.  I thought I had an opportunity with the two PC cars, and pretty slow on the bus stop.  Unfortunately I got caught in one of them.  But I did not have enough for him.
 
I thought I had when I picked up the car for the final two stints.  Also because, again, a lot of seconds to him.  But the final rush, unfortunately not.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Wayne, just maybe your emotions right now having, again, wound up on the podium, coming out of retirement with the well‑chronicled deal here with a long‑time friend and associate and obviously your two sons.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Firstly, I’d like to just say that it was a heck of a race.  It was an incredible weekend, an emotional weekend to be in a situation to have my kids and Max is like my oldest kid, to be together.  We’ve been around each other for the last 20 years, whatever it is.
 
And Chevrolet, Mark Kent, Mark Reuss, Jim Campbell and everybody at Chevrolet invested so much in this program, when the Corvette program first started some two years ago, that this win was for them.  Obviously I wanted to do it ‑‑ I wanted to be the team that did it first.  You know what, those guys did a great job.  They beat us fair and square, and they deserved to win, so I congratulate all those guys.
 
But really, I’m still really happy to have had this experience and to have had everybody support it so much.  It was just a great weekend.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Thanks, Wayne.  Jordan, obviously a really good run for you.  Just talk about how it went.
 
JORDAN TAYLOR:  Yeah, it was a long race for everyone, I guess.  Obviously starting off with the crash at the beginning was probably on everyone’s mind the entire race.  Hopefully Memo is doing okay.  I haven’t heard anything about Matteo, but obviously best wishes to those guys.  But yeah, the race was a bit crazy.  I think it was a unique year with a lot of drivers making questionable moves out there.  It was very easy to make a mistake and hit someone who wasn’t really paying attention.  It was easy to get caught up in other people’s trouble, and that’s kind of what happened to us this morning when a DP lost it and I had to avoid it going off the track and we had to make an unscheduled stop to clean off the radiator.  So that was a bit frustrating.  We had a clean race, almost the exact same as last year where we didn’t have one mechanical issue.  We only came in for fuel, tires and driver.  We never went behind the wall, so it’s a testament to the team and we came away with second last year and second this year.  Hopefully it’s a good trend, and we can win the championship again.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Ricky, obviously you’re returning to the team after a little bit away.  Talk about getting back with the family team here.
 
RICKY TAYLOR:  Yeah, it’s really cool.  It had been a year, and we had been the enemy for a year, and now I came back and I felt like the family again.  I mean, for the four of us to be up here, the relationship we have together, like Max is like our brother, and we’re always teasing my dad.  It’s just kind of weird that we’re on this big of a stage, and just us four weird guys up here.  It’s kind of cool.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Speak for yourself.
Q.  Wayne, are you done on retiring for the 27th time?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  I found out during the race that you made a statement that I was the weak link in the team, so I’m not sure if I’m going to even answer that one.
Q.  Is this news to you?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  No, no, no.  To be honest, these guys will support me in saying this, I didn’t really want to do this.  I didn’t want to make an idiot of myself.  If you drive race cars all your life you always want to be the quickest guy, and now suddenly I’m coming in being the slowest guy, buy so slow that I’m questioning should I be on the track or not.  But actually it worked out to be really good.  They put me in the car at a good time and I had a lot of fun.  But I could never ‑‑ you could never bring this moment back, and to try and make this another moment, it reminds me of a lot of racing drivers that just hang on and hang on and hang on and don’t stop when they’re getting slower, and for me this moment came, and it’s here, and I could never make this happen again.
Q.  What’s worse, finishing second or having your sons crack on you the entire race about everything involving your driving?
JORDAN TAYLOR:  That’s every day.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Ricky is a lot more gentle on me, but Jordan is really a terror.  The first thing, we got out of the car, and I said, you need to smile because we have a good result.  He said, I have nothing to smile about.  The two of them are like really different.
 
And unfortunately Jordan and I are the same, and Ricky is like his mother.  It’s quite a contrast, but that’s how it is.
Q.  Max, on the last restart, he seemed to get a pr
etty good jump on you, and you had to wait until the green flew before you could go around the second‑place car.  Explain that rule, where it is you get to finally make the move to pass and chase after him and how frustrating is that to watch him pulling away before you’re even able to stomp on the gas?
MAX ANGELELLI:  Correct.  I feel that rule is really unfair because, I could just (inaudible) on the throttle wide open, a lot earlier than me for a much longer time, so he basically pulled a couple of seconds, I think, and I couldn’t do anything because the P2 car in the straight, he was wide open, as well, but I couldn’t do anything.  That was really frustrating.
 
WAYNE TAYLOR:  Yeah, I don’t think he actually meant that it is unfair.  I think what he was trying to say is that that rule is a little strange, and it makes it even more strange if you are a DP car and you get caught with 27 GTs between you and the leader, and then the leader can accelerate as soon as the lights go off and control the start.  I wouldn’t say it’s unfair, but that’s what the rule is now, but I think it’s a rule that should maybe be looked at.
Q.  Without that rule do you think you would have had a chance?
MAX ANGELELLI:  Yes, we were very strong in turn No. 1.  That was the assigned place to try something.
Q. 15 minutes before the race, something like that, the television shot your face, and you were talking to Max on the radio.  As you mentioned, it was very emotional.  Can you maybe say what you talked to him?  Was it some kind of advice?  And it was mentioned that you were running really a family team. In case your two sons have difficult opinion setting up a car than their father, is it difficult to convince them to change their minds?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  I talk to Max a lot but he doesn’t listen every time.  I just said to him, you know, you’re the guy we think we need to have in at the end. You can make the difference.  We all decided that.
 
You know, when Jordan brought the car in, we looked like we had a car that could win the race.  Early on in the evening Max had been in that same position, and I think had passed everybody in the field.  We thought it was the right decision to be made at that time.
 
As far as the setting up the car, I just got told how to drive it, so I had nothing to do with it.
Q.  Max, I’ve got two questions.  The first is I know that the caution was your best chance to win the race, but were you surprised to see a full‑course caution there?
MAX ANGELELLI:  No, no, that happened already in the past.  No, I wasn’t surprised.  We need a yellow.  There was a lot of debris.
Q.  You’re now getting out of a car, so you sort of made way for Ricky, and you’re going to do only the endurance races.  Are you going to miss doing this all the time?
MAX ANGELELLI:  I don’t know yet.  I may.  I don’t know.  Maybe not.  He’s very happy not driving, so maybe I’ll feel the same.
Q.  Is there any chance, could you guys put together a second team?  I know Wayne wouldn’t be your co‑driver, but is that possible and you would consider a full season?
WAYNE TAYLOR:  We say that every year, and we really do want to do that, but it’s incredibly hard in this sport today to find the backing and the commercial partners that understand the business of racing.  Now with this merger, which I think is great for the sport, the short‑term is difficult because the costs have gone up so dramatically that it’s very hard to first find the budget for your first car, let alone the second car.  We’ve been working for three years to build up the assets to run it, but we’ve always made the point that we wouldn’t do it unless we had proper commercial partners and stuff.  And if we did that, obviously Max would drive and for sure I wouldn’t.
Q.  Ricky, the Richard Childress bunch seems pretty impressed with your stock car racing prowess.  Any chance you might end up doing something with those guys?
RICKY TAYLOR:  I mean, it’s a great connection, and I did like a truck test and a dirt test, and it was a lot of fun, but I think at the end of the day, it also comes down to money.  You know, I’m really engrained in sports car racing, and with the new series, it’s really a great time to continue my career here and try to build a life here rather than risking everything and going that way.
 
But I’d love to always keep that option open for road courses or whatever, have somebody just put me in a car.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Gentlemen, congratulations.  Thanks for joining us.
 
JOHN MARTIN, FABIEN GIROIX, BRIAN FRISSELLE AND BURT FRISSELLE – FINISHED THIRD
 
THE MODERATOR:  We have our third‑place finishers here today overall and in the Prototype class for the 52nd Rolex 24 at Daytona, co‑drivers of the No. 9 Action Express Racing Corvette DP, Burt Frisselle, Brian Frisselle, John Martin and Fabien Giroix.  Burt, why don’t you start us off, just take us through how it went for you guys today.  Do you feel like you kind of maybe through under the radar a little bit to get this third place?
 
BURT FRISSELLE:  Yeah, you know, I think especially with the affiliation Action Express had with Delta Motorsports this week, we definitely flew under the radar.  We had two excellent co‑drivers in John Martin and Fabien, and I won’t try to say his last name because I would slaughter it.  Anyway, I feel like we did fly under the radar, and John drove brilliantly in his times in the car, Fabian was very smart during the time, obviously when the big red flag happened and our thoughts and prayers go out to Alex.  But really, this whole weekend started to come together for us on Wednesday night.  We had a big team dinner, both cars, and we really felt like we had an opportunity to be one‑two.  One‑three was a little bit short of our goal, but, you know, we’ll take it.  I think Action Express even with the affiliation with Delta, everyone worked so hard, so well together, and we felt even back when we were testing in the beginning of this month, back in December, that we were going to have two cars capable of winning, and today we did have two cars capable of winning.  One did, and one came home on the podium.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Brian, obviously your dad raced, you and Burt raced together.  Talk a little bit about kind of the family connection and how important it is for you guys to have success together.
 
BRIAN FRISSELLE:  Well, it’s just a nice thing that we’re very blessed to be able to have success together.  Dad was on the podium here at the 24 Hours of Daytona.  He won Sebring, so Sebring is up next, so hopefully we can match his mark there.
 
You know, I’ve just got to tip my hat to the whole team, Action Express, and Delta Motorsports, just for putting together two great cars.  Both cars on the podium, both cars on the lead lap, one car wins, which is how it’s going to have to be, and also I mean, it was a tough race just because it started off with a terrible accident with a good friend Memo Gidley, and our thoughts are with him.  We know he’s already started his recovery, but it quickly puts into perspective what you’re doing out there and what really matters.
 
THE MODERATOR:  Fabien, just talk about this experience of coming here, joining this team and lining up on the podium.
 
FABIEN GIROIX:  It was fantastic for me because it was the first time I come to Daytona, and I never expect when I come to the beginning of January to make the test here, I never imagine that we can do a podium.  We had a fantastic car, great teammates who make very good job, and as a team, Action Express and Delta, Millennium Development, fantastic job.
 
THE MODERATOR:  John, your commen
ts on a fine effort here?
 
JOHN MARTIN:  Yeah, I mean, just to back up what everyone said really, I think the whole Millennium Delta Motorsports, Action Express team have done amazing, same as Fabien.  Really it’s my first time here, first time driving the car.  So to come here and sort of run up front all day was amazing, really.  Had some good teammates, obviously Burt and Brian have been here a fair bit, so it was certainly good to have them and their experience all this week.  Thanks a lot, guys.  Yeah, it’s a privilege to be up here, really.
Q.  Burt, you said earlier you had two cars winning the race, and I think maybe you stay in this kind of standard for the rest of the season.  How identical are both cars in the setup?  I think you’re sharing information with your sister car.  And having two cars winning a race, is there any decision made before the race that you didn’t put each other out?
BURT FRISSELLE:  Yeah, I mean, basically the motto of Action Express starting back at last year was two cars, one team.  So when it comes to in terms of data sharing, our lead engineer Ian Watt, it really is a two‑car effort that’s really one team as opposed to traditional two‑car teams that are almost operating as two separate teams that share the same shop.  We have very much ‑‑ the cars roll to the track often within let’s say 100‑pound spring difference, maybe that. And very often they’re very close, and we do share everything.  And when our engineers do take different paths, we all get together and find out what’s working for what car.
 
The other thing that’s been really great about that relationship is the relationship Brian and I have developed with Christian as well over the last year, and the drivers have that same synergy, as well.  So I think we’re very lucky, and I thought it worked unbelievably with the Millennium Delta Motorsports guys to come in.  They brought their engineer David, their dad Chris, they’re basically their version of Elton Sawyer, they like to call it, they’ve got a gentleman named Simon, and those guys integrated into the team seamlessly and really ran the car.  So really it was an Action Express prepared car, crewed car, but run by their effort, and it shows that guys have been racing in Europe that haven’t come to Daytona and haven’t fought this with some guidance from Action.  They came in and did an absolute brilliant job of running it, calling it, collaborating, and we all worked well together from the start of the race to the end.

Chevy Racing–IMSA TUDOR UNITED SPORTSCAR CHAMPIONSHIP

52ND ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA
DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER RACE NOTES AND QUOTES
JANUARY 25-26, 2014
 
JOAO BARBOSA, NO. 5 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP-SECOND ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA OVERALL VICTORY
TALK ABOUT THE LAST STINT. YOU MUST NOT HAVE WANTED TO SEE THAT FINAL YELLOW.
“I didn’t want to see it. I had quite a good gap and cushion so I could manage traffic. I was getting quite worried initially because I kept hitting traffic at the wrong moments. When the yellow came, I was struggling with the car. The gears weren’t as smooth as I would have liked it. They were sticking a little bit. But what a race. Action Express first and third; Corvette, one-two-three. These Action Express guys are the best. And my teammates…what a phenomenal job. We had a little hiccup during the night but we still had plenty of time to come back and that’s what we did. We kept fighting to the end.”
 
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI, NO. 5 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP- SECOND ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA VICTORY
“I have no words. It is really exciting. The last couple of laps couldn’t have been more exciting. We weren’t expecting that yellow but unfortunately it happened. Joao seemed to have it under control. Max (Angelelli in the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP) is an awesome driver and he is always a friend. The Chevy power was awesome. The combination of Joao, Sebastian (Bourdais) and myself… I guess it works!”
 
SEBASTIAN BOURDAIS, NO. 5 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP- FIRST ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA VICTORY
“This is as big as it gets. It’s one of those historic races you want on your resume, and it’s done today. It was done fighting hard for it. It really feels good for Team Chevy and everyone involved because we went and grabbed this one.
 
HOW WAS YOUR HEART RATE ON THE FINAL FEW LAPS ON THE RESTART?
You can’t help yourself but to think what could go wrong from here. But it is such a relief when the checkered flag comes out.”
 
WAYNE TAYLOR, NO. 10 WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP:
TALK ABOUT YOUR RACE AND SECOND PLACE FINISH
“It wasn’t what we wanted; we wanted to win the first one for Corvette. Hats off to those guys. They won the race fair and square. I am so happy for Mark Reuss, General Motors Executive VP Global Product Development; Jim Campbell, U.S. Vice President Performance Vehicles and Motorsports; and Mark Kent, Director of Chevrolet Racing. They’ve supported us for so long, and they deserve this more than anybody else. Now they have a one-two-three (finish) I think that is fantastic. I am just so proud to be associated with them.”
A HISTORIC RACE FOR YOU TO RACE WITH YOUR SONS (Jordan Taylor and Ricky Taylor): “Yes it was. It was an amazing experience. They were just superstars. I’m proud of them and Max (Angelelli) and my team. All the partners we have. Team Chevy.”
JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 10 WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP:
ON THE FINISH:
“Not that happy to be honest. It is two years in a row that we haven’t been in the garage or had an issue with the car, and finished second both years. So, it is frustrating. But at the end of the day. It’s good for points, good for the championship and a great day for Corvette, so I can’t complain.”
RICKY TAYLOR, NO. 10 WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP:
ON THE RACE FINISH:
“It’s disappointing. I never thought I would say that for finishing second at the 24 Hours. We had a really good car. It was nice when you know that the Corvette is the car to beat and you are lucky enough to drive one. It was really cool to have an opportunity to win. That is just more reason to be disappointed. We had such a good car. Corvette was the car to have so that is kind of disappointing, but a good points day.”
MAX ANGELELLI, NO. 10 WAYNE TAYLOR RACING CORVETTE DP:
ON HIS CHARGE FOR THROUGH THE FIELD TO CHALLENGE FOR THE WIN:
“I thought I could really get him. When I got in the car, and I was chasing him, I thought ‘Okay, all I need is a yellow’. Like last year, all of a sudden those people find speed.  But it is a great day for Chevy…one-two-three.”
 
BURT FRISSELLE, NO. 9 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP:
TALK ABOUT THE GREAT PODIUM FINISH:
“For the team, and especially for the Delta Racing guys – this is their first event. You can’t be happier than to be on the podium with the Corvette to make the whole podium Corvettes here in Daytona for the Rolex 24. That is pretty, pretty special. For Action Express to take the top step and the third step on the podium, it’s amazing. I am so proud just to do my part. Brian (Frisselle) drove brilliantly. John (Martin) drove brilliant. Fabien (Giroix) did a nice job early in the race having to deal with the red flag and the yellow.  Our thoughts and prayers to go out to Memo (Gidley) who was also driving a Corvette. It is just a very exciting day for Action Express, for Delta Motorsports and for the Frisselle Brothers to be on the podium together here at Daytona.”
JOHN MARTIN, NO. 9 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP:
TALK ABOUT THE FINISH FOR THE TEAM:
“It was obviously my first time here at Daytona; first time driving the Corvette Daytona Prototypes. I am absolutely privileged to be here and to drive with these guys as well who have obviously been here a few times.  To finish third as well is amazing. The Corvette held strong all day, all night and all the next day. It is good. I would like to thank Delta Motorsports, Action Express for having us here and Millennium for making it happen.”
BRIAN FRISSELLE, NO. 9 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP:
TALK ABOUT THE FINISH:
“Props to Chevy. They took the top-three in this – the toughest endurance race in the world. Huge props to them. The motor ran great. We had a few little issues with our car, but overall, just a great event. I have to thank Action Express, Delta Motorsports, Chevy and Millennium for making it all happen.”
FABIEN GIROIX, NO. 9 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP:
TALK ABOUT YOUR RACE: “We came here and the car was fantastic. No big issues. For me to come for the first time to Daytona, it was very exciting. Right team, right car, right everything.”

Chevy Racing–Rolex 24 Half Way

TEAM CHEVY AT DAYTONA: Action Express Leads Halfway
No. 5 Corvette DP the dominant car at the Rolex 24 At Daytona
 
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 26, 2014) – Action Express Racing’s No. 5 Corvette Daytona Prototype was the dominant car in the opening half of the 52nd Rolex 24 At Daytona as both Action Express entries were among the Chevrolet-powered that led during the first 12 hours at Daytona International Speedway.
 
The No. 5 Corvette DP of Joao Barbosa, Christian Fittipaldi, Sebastian Bourdais and Burt Frisselle led a vast majority of the race and was shown sixth overall but on the lead lap during the most recent round of pit stops. Bourdais held the fastest lap of the race – 1:39.830. Shortly after halfway, Fittipaldi cycled back into the lead and took over the top spot from Frisselle, who also drives the No. 9 Action Express car.
 
The No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP was shown third with Ricky Taylor at the wheel. In all, five of the Corvette DPs led the race at one point.
 
In GTLM, misfortune struck both of the Chevrolet Corvette C7.R race cars in the opening half of the race. The No. 4 Corvette suffered a water leak near the five-hour mark that resulted in a lengthy pit stop and two laps lost. Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner and Robin Liddell drove the car back through the field and gained a lap back before halfway and ran third just into the 13th hour.
 
The No. 3 Corvette of Jan Magnussen, Antonio Garcia and Ryan Briscoe drove from the rear of the field to the GTLM lead in the opening half of the race before another fluid leak halted its charge with Briscoe at the wheel.
 
The opening race of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship continues through 2:10 p.m. ET.
 
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS, NO. 5 ACTION EXPRESS RACING CORVETTE DP:
HOW WAS IT OUT THERE? (approximately 15.5 hours remaining in race)
“That is a loaded question. It is a little bit crazy out there right now. All we are trying to achieve right now is to see daylight, and see if we can start getting a little racy out there once we get closer to the finish. But even doing that, I didn’t manage to quite stay out of trouble. Got hit and spun around. We have a fast car, but it feels like you are playing poker every time you are passing a slower car. It is a bit of a mind game out there. You are being careful and then you get a little conservative, and then everybody is jumping on you. And then you spend more time in that pack of traffic, and you eventually get it. If you try and be a little more aggressive, you get hit as well. So it is pretty tough. But overall, the good thing is that the car is still intact. It’s a hot rod. It is pretty quick right now. The balance is pretty good. Hopefully by the end of the race, there are fewer cars on track and people start to figure out a little bit more where they need to be on the race track because it feels like there are some terrorists out there.”
 
WHAT IS THE CONDITION OF THE RACE TRACK?
“It’s not so bad. The number of cars it can clean things up pretty quick. But for sure, if you put wheels out of the line, that is when it becomes tricky. You kind of have to drive the GT line because they use the curbs and sometime even a little bit more than that.  You’ve got to follow that route otherwise you are putting a lot of stuff on your tires. That’s not good. You’ve got to watch out a little bit, but track conditions are not bad at all. It is very cold out there, and engines are running good and the grip is obviously is better when the track temperatures are dropping a bit, so right now. It’s about as good as we’ve seen all week pretty much.”
 
DID YOU AND YOUR TEAMMATE (JOHN MARTIN) HAVE A DISAGREEMENT AT THE BUS STOP?
“Yes. I guess I was expecting a little bit of courtesy by my teammates. But somehow, we aren’t on the same frequency here right now. I was a little surprised, I took my sanction. Just spun the thing around and made sure I wasn’t going to hit him, went to the back and from there I just had to be a little patient. But I was definitely not expecting what happened there.”

WHEN WE GET TO THE END OF THE RACE, DO YOU HAVE THE EQUIPMENT TO GO FOR THE WIN?
“I would say if the conditions remain the same, yes, we’re pretty strong. We’ve shown that with fast lap. It seems like we are in a little bit more of a world of hurt when the conditions were warmer and the track was slicker, and so we will see. Tomorrow is supposed to stay overcast. So if it is overcast, the track will stay fairly cold and will play in our favor. You could definitely tell that the P2 were definitely in the hunt this afternoon. It seems like at night when the conditions cool off, then the DP gets up. It is a variable game.”
 
ERIC CURRAN, NO. 31 MARSH RACING CORVETTE DP
HOW HAS IT BEEN SO FAR?
“It’s not the ideal race for us so far. We started out decent and strong. We had a little issue with brake bias issues early in the race. We had too much rear brake in the car and went for a spin. That set us back a lap or so. The biggest issue is that the front splitter mounts broke on the frame rail. We had to spend 15-20 laps in the garage fixing the frame rails for the splitter extensions. It’s too bad because we’re running 1:41s and 1:42s, which is similar to what the leaders are doing but that doesn’t help us when we’re 20 laps down. These guys are all working hard in our first prototype race ever.”
 
ARE THESE TYPICAL NEW CAR ISSUES?
“It’s tough. You never know what to expect. A splitter extension mounts breaking? That’s a little weird but anything can happen in this race. We’re on a steep learning curve with this prototype. Things like the brake bias is stuff that bit us. We’ve never run carbon brakes before. We didn’t know where we needed to be and gambled on a setup that didn’t quite work. We will keep going though. We’re learning a ton and learning fast. We need to do so more testing after this to get a better hold on the car.”
 
RICHARD WESTBROOK, NO. 90 SPIRIT OF DAYTONA CORVETTE DP
“It’s a little bit frustrating. We’re just fighting to stay on the lead lap at the moment, which we’re doing a good job of. Some others have found some pace and we’ve lost some. So now we’re working our way back to getting the car how it was in practice. We’re trying out some stuff now; we just made an aero change. If that doesn’t change we will try something else mechanically.”
 
TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C6.R
ARE YOU ABLE TO FIGHT BACK FROM THE EARLIER TROUBLE?
“The car is quick. We’re making the right calls. In the heat of the moment, I think I got Chuck (Houghton, engineer) a little wound up because I wanted to be clear with what I was supposed do. I was very clear with what I was supposed to do until Chuck called me in right in the end when I was supposed to stay out. I knew better and should have stayed out. That’ll be really annoying if eight hours from now we’re still one lap down. There is enough time where I think we’ll have another opportunity. The car is quick. That part I’m not concerned about. If we desperately needed that lap, we wouldn’t be in good shape. But we don’t desperately need it yet. We have to keep turning laps and pounding around out there.”
 
ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C6.R
THAT WAS AN EVENTUAL COUPLE OF STINTS…
“It was quite a good stint. Luckily both the yellows came two-thirds or three-quarters into each of the stints so it wasn’t easy to make decisions on pit strategies and tires. We just did fuel on the first one and chose just right side tires and fuel on the second one. I got out again with no problem. The Porsche had four tires so he had an advantage. In the end, I was having some issues with some sudden oversteering. I thought there was oil on the track but it was me that was leaking water from the engine so I spun on my own water. It got worse and worse and we decided to stop to check everything. We are lacking a little power at top speed.”
 
ARE YOU SURP
RISED AT THE NUMBER OF CARS THAT ARE STILL IN THE RACE?
“There is a lot of traffic. It seems like it never goes down. It is very challenging. So far we have done one full rotation of all the drivers so you don’t know when you go by someone if it’s a slow guy. You just have to be careful.”
 

Chevy Racing–Z/28.R Shows Promise at Daytona

NEW CHEVROLET CAMARO Z/28.R SHOWS PROMISE IN OPENING RACE
CKS Autosport leads contingent in Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge at Daytona
 
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 24, 2013) – The new Chevrolet Camaro Z/28.R completed its first week of racing Friday with a promising showing in the BMW Performance 200 – the opening round of this year’s Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. The potential of the historic nameplate was evident in the two-and-a-half hour race that saw CKS Autosport’s No. 01 Camaro lead the contingent of new cars in the Grand Sport class.
 
The No. 01 Camaro Z/28.R of Lawson Aschenbach and Eric Curran placed 13th in GS, but that wasn’t the entire story. Both CKS and Stevenson Motorsports made great strides toward establishing the Camaro has a GS contender in an exceptionally difficult series and class.
 
“To be able to show up, sort through some issues, make the race and finish in a decent spot, we have to be happy with that,” Aschenbach said. “A penalty in pitlane hurt us. But the pace is pretty good and we are excited about that. To me, it looks like a very good package that’s good overall. It seems to do everything pretty good. We just have to work on it a little bit more.”
 
Curran finished on the same lap as the winning BMW. Stevenson Motorsports’ No. 9 Z/28.R of Andy Lally and Matt Bell was running at the end and finished six laps down after an early fuel line issue. The No. 6 entry of Robin Liddell and Andrew Davis suffered a mechanical failure in the last 37 minutes after a solid run in the top-10.
 
“This weekend was an opportunity to learn and gather data on a brand new race car,” said Lisa Talarico, Chevrolet’s Program Manager for the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. “We feel very good about the potential this new package offers. Everyone at Chevrolet Racing and our partner teams will look at the data collected throughout the weekend, improve the car and be ready for the next race at Sebring in March.”
 
The next round of the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge is March 14 at Sebring International Raceway.
 

Chevy Racing– BMW PERFORMANCE 200

IMSA CONTINENTAL TIRE SPORTS CAR CHALLENGE

BMW PERFORMANCE 200

DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY

TEAM CHEVY DRIVER RACE NOTES AND QUOTES

JANUARY 24, 2014

LAWSON ASCHENBACH, NO. 01 CKS AUTOSPORT CAMARO Z/28.R =96 FINISHED 13TH IN =
GS CLASS

DO YOU FEEL THINGS WENT AS WELL AS YOU COULD HAVE EXPECTED? =93Exactly. It =
was tough coming here with not turning a single lap on the car. To be able =
to show up, sort through some issues, make the race and finish in a decent =
spot, we have to be happy with that. A penalty in pitlane hurt us. But the =
pace is pretty good and we are excited about that. We have a lot of fine-tu=
ning to do for the longevity of our run, but we=92ll get there.=94

DID RUNNING IN RACE CONDITIONS GIVE YOU ANOTHER LEVEL OF DATA TO EXAMINE? =
=93Definitely. There are so many different cars in this series with so many=
different attributes. Obviously we have to work on ours. We used to be rea=
lly good under braking, but we don=92t really know where that is until we s=
ort out the setup and so forth. To me, it looks like a very good package th=
at=92s good overall. It seems to do everything pretty good. We just have to=
work on it a little bit more. It seemed a little down on straightline spee=
d compared to the other cars, which is what we thought would happen here. B=
ut there are a lot of positive things to think about. Hopefully we can regr=
oup and get things better for Sebring.=94

ANDY LALLY, NO. 9 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO Z/28.R =96 FINISHED 24TH IN =
GS CLASS

HOW WOULD YOU RATE THE START OF THE Z/28.R PROGRAM? “I’m really proud to be=
a part of Team Chevy, and we were hustling out there. This car looks good.=
These things are bound to happen. It’s a brand new program with a brand ne=
w car. This car is spectacular. You just have to work the little bugs out. =
That will happen, and it will happen soon. I’m already looking forward to g=
etting to Sebring and racing for a win. We will move on from here and get s=
ome better results next time.”

ROBIN LIDDELL, NO. 9 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO Z/28.R =96 FINISHED 25TH =
IN GS CLASS

WAS THIS AN ENCOURAGING START TO THE Z/28.R PROGRAM? =93To be honest, the c=
ar was going very well. I hadn=92t had a lot of green-flag laps. It was a l=
ot of start-stop, start-stop for several laps then we would go yellow. I fe=
lt being around people in a race situation that the car was competitive. I =
made some pretty good restarts. I picked up three places on my next-to-last=
restart, and on my last one I=92m not sure how many I got by Turn 3 but it=
must have been at least five spots. I got by the two BMWs ahead of me that=
we were competing with on fuel; they were the two cars that were ahead of =
us when we left the pits for fuel. It=92s a bit frustrating, obviously. We =
wanted to leave here with some points. But I=92m not ultra-disappointed bec=
ause the car felt competitive.=94

WHAT CAUSED THE CAR TO STOP ON-TRACK? =93It was good up until something wen=
t in the driveline. There was oil coming out of the differential when I sto=
pped. When I went to power out of Turn 3, there was a big mechanical bang a=
nd then lots of clattering around back there; there was something pretty un=
happy flapping around. I lost most of my drive and then just coasted off an=
d out the gate at

Turn 5. We don=92t know what it was and need to investigate. The crew worke=
d incredibly hard and it=92s disappointing not to finish the race. But I th=
ink we=92ve shown that this car has some promise. We just need to rebound a=
nd get ready for Sebring.=94

ANDREW DAVIS, NO. 9 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO Z/28.R =96 FINISHED 25TH I=
N GS CLASS

DID YOU SEE THE POTENTIAL ABOUT WHAT THIS CAR CAN BE IN THE FUTURE? =93Ther=
e is no doubt. I=92m thrilled to be back in the Camaro with the Z/28.R. It=
=92s such a new program with so few laps run in general because we had some=
issues leading up. It was a big learning experience for me during the race=
=96 not just getting used to the GS class, but also learning the Z.28/R. I=
loved it and thought it was great. Every lap I felt more and more comforta=
ble. Certainly this showed me the potential of the car once we get it sorte=
d out and optimized. I=92m really pleased and looking forward to the season=
. The result today is a little disappointing today, but it was all about ga=
thering data.=94

ASHLEY MCCALMONT, NO. 00 CKS AUTOSPORT CAMARO GS.R – RETIRED FROM COMPETITI=
ON IN FINAL HOUR OF THE RACE AFTER ON-TRACK INCIDENT

WHAT HAPPENED? “On the restart it got a little busy. I was out on old tires=
and got stuck on the right side after the kink.  The car hooked and I was =
just along for the ride after that.”

World of Outlaws–Bright Lights of Las Vegas to Shine on FVP Outlaw Showdown

Bright Lights of Las Vegas to Shine on FVP Outlaw Showdown
World of Outlaws STP Sprint Cars invade entertainment capital March 5-6
CONCORD, N.C. – Jan. 24, 2014 – The bright lights of Las Vegas will shine on the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series when it invades one of the biggest entertainment cities on the planet for the two-night FVP Outlaw Showdown March 5-6 at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

FVP and the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Cars will get top billing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Wednesday and Thursday during the city’s biggest racing week of the year. Tony Stewart Racing’s Donny Schatz is a seven-time winner at Las Vegas but Daryn Pittman of Kasey Kahne Racing will be seeking a victory to help him defend his series championship.

FVP Outlaw Showdown March 5-6 at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
In addition, the FVP Outlaw Showdown will mark the final time the legendary Steve Kinser will be competing for a World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series crown during his “Salute to the King” season at the Las Vegas dirt track. Kinser is a 20-time champion who has earned four of his 576 career victories at the half-mile speedway just north of The Strip.

FVP, a leading provider of OE-quality aftermarket automotive parts, is title sponsor of the event and excited to join the fans for an incredible event.

“FVP has long been involved in sprint car racing and we’re pleased to partner with the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Cars at a world-class facility like Las Vegas,” FVP’s Joel Quetschenbach said. “The FVP Outlaw Showdown is going to be a huge two days in the country’s most electric city.”

Also on the card with the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series will be West Coast Late Models and IMCA Modifieds on Wednesday, and West Coast 360 non-wing sprint cars and IMCA Modifieds on Thursday.

Grandstands are scheduled to open at 5 p.m. with qualifying events at 6:15 p.m. and opening ceremonies at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets can be ordered online by clicking www.WorldofOutlaws.com/tickets or by calling 877-395-8606.

Chevy Racing–Gurney Takes Historic Pole for Rolex 24

CCORVETTE DPs AT DAYTONA: Gurney Takes Historic Pole for Rolex 24
GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing leads Corvette DP front-row sweep in Daytona qualifying
 
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 23, 2014) – Alex Gurney’s name will go down in history as the first Corvette Daytona Prototype driver to claim an overall pole position for the Rolex 24 At Daytona. The Californian put the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Corvette DP on pole Thursday for the 52nd running of the twice-around-the-clock endurance classic and the opening round of the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
 
Gurney’s best lap was a 1:38.270 (130.416 mph) in the Corvette DP he shares with Jon Fogarty, Memo Gidley and Darren Law. Richard Westbrook made it a sweep of the front row for Corvette DPs with the second-fastest qualifying time – 1:38.487 (130.129 mph) in Spirit of Daytona Racing’s No. 90 entry.
 
“We were pretty diligent all through the testing we did and concentrated on full-tank runs,” Gurney said. “We never really went low-fuel to show what we had. When we pulled the fuel out, the time came. We were pretty happy with the car and it’s nice to get this pole.”
 
Corvette DPs posted four of the five fastest qualifying laps. Action Express Racing’s two entries were fourth and fifth with Christian Fittipaldi leading the team’s efforts in the No. 5 Corvette DP at 1:38.658 (129.903 mph). Burt Frisselle was next in the No. 9 car at 1:38.838 (129.667 mph).
 
“Congratulations to Alex Gurney and GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing on their historic qualifying result today at Daytona,” said Mark Kent, Chevrolet’s Director of Racing. “It’s fantastic to have two Corvette Daytona Prototypes on the front row for the opening race of the TUDOR United SportsCar Series. Thursday’s qualifying results – with four Corvette DPs in the top-five – is a testament to the collective effort by Chevrolet Racing, Earnhardt Childress Racing, GM Powertrain and our Chevrolet teams. This will be a very demanding race but our teams are as prepared as they can be for this grueling 24-hour event.”
 
The contingent of six Corvette DPs was in the top-12 of the qualifying order. It’s an impressive start in a new championship after Chevrolet claimed the last two engine manufacturer championships in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series. Chevrolet power is looking for its first victory in the Rolex 24 since 2003.
 
“This was an excellent start to the weekend for our Corvette DP teams,” said Jim Lutz, Chevrolet Racing Program Manager for Daytona Prototypes. “It is encouraging to see the speed and consistency from the test days earlier this month through today. There are many more challenge and laps to go before the end of the race Sunday, and as a result no one in the Chevrolet camp will rest on these accomplishments.”
 
The TUDOR Championship is a merger of the Rolex Series and the American Le Mans Series.  The main prototype category is the featured class with a mix of GRAND-AM Daytona Prototypes racing for the first time against several other prototype machines that made up the ALMS grid a year ago.
 
Saturday’s race begins at 2:10 p.m. ET with live television coverage available throughout on FOX, FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2.
 
In the GS class of the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, the new Chevrolet Camaro Z/28.R made an impressive run in its first qualifying session. The No. 01 CKS Autosport entry of Eric Curran and Lawson Aschenbach qualified fourth with a time of 1:56.625 (109.891 mph) and was only 0.801 seconds off Jade Buford’s pole-winning time.
 
Stevenson Motorsports’ No. 9 Camaro Z/28.R of Matt Bell and Andy Lally posted the fifth-fastest time of the session at 1:56.750 (109.773 mph). A lengthy red-flag period meant both the Camaros posted just two laps.
 
The opening Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge race is set for 1:45 p.m. ET on Friday. FOX Sports 2 will air the race beginning at 6 p.m. ET.
 
EDITORS: High-resolution images of Corvette Racing are available on the Team Chevy media site for editorial use only.
 
ALEX GURNEY, NO. 99 GAINSCO/BOB STALLINGS RACING CORVETTE DP
“I’m really happy and excited about this all. I have to say a big thank you to Bob Stallings and everyone on the team. Most of the team worked right through Christmas and New Year’s with no real time off due to all the changes and challenges. This means a lot to our team. It feels really good to pull it off.”
Future plans: “Bob and everyone are trying to find more way to keep going. You never know. Starting well and finishing well is the best place to be. I think we’re in a good position as far as doing some more races.”
Dealing with grid size and classes: “We’ve had quite a few sessions to run together and I think everyone has a feel for where they are going to be. I don’t expect things to be massively different. Obviously there are some bigger closing speeds. On the banking, I’d like to see cars stay low more often; sometimes when a guy stays in the middle, you don’t know which way he is going to go. For the prototype cars that have more top speed, that can be a little more tricky. There are a lot of really good drivers in this field and it should be OK.”
 
RICHARD WESTBROOK, NO. 90 SPIRIT OF DAYTONA CORVETTE DP
“I’m delighted. We have a quick car. It’s the first time for me in a DP going into this 24-hour race knowing that we have a car that can fight for the overall win. But we have to do all the other stuff right, now – the pit stops, reliability, staying out of crashes. Pole would have been nice but the front row… I’m delighted.”
 
LAWSON ASCHENBACH, NO. 01 CKS AUTOSPORT CAMARO Z/28.R
“It’s been a bit of a learning experience this whole weekend. We’ve had a lot to sort out in a little bit of time. But the Chevrolet Camaro Z/28.R is a fantastic race car and I think we have a lot of potential in it. We just have to keep working. It’s a new car for all of us here, and these things don’t happen quick. You have to take your time to sort through all the issues and then start working on setup and so forth. We’re very happy with it so far. Give us a little bit of time and we will be fighting for wins.”
 
MATT BELL, NO. 9 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO Z/28.R
“One thing you learn really quickly about this series is that when you see 15 minutes for a session, you usually only get about five minutes. When you’re working with a program for a production car that doesn’t yet exist, we are doing the stuff that is usually held behind the curtain. It’s fortunate in a way that we’re doing it out in the open. Proof that this car can qualify in the top-10 in its first time out with very few laps under it while we are still teething is awesome. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a GS car that has come in and really done this. It still has a huge ways to go. But the development that has gone into the chassis and braking system is going to a huge advantage down the road. You can tell as soon as you get in the car that there is a refinement you don’t get in GS racing or even GT racing.”
 

Chevy Racing–CORVETTE RACING AT DAYTONA

Mixed Bag in First Qualifying for Corvette C7.R
Gavin fourth in GTLM order; electrical issue sidelines No. 3 Corvette
 
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 23, 2014) – Corvette Racing’s first qualifying session with the Chevrolet Corvette C7.R proved to be a bit of a mixed bag at Daytona International Speedway. Oliver Gavin qualified the No. 4 Corvette C7.R fourth in the GT Le Mans class for the 52nd Rolex 24 At Daytona – the opening round of the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
 
The Briton turned a best lap of 1:44.729 (122.373 mph) in the Corvette C7.R he will share with Tommy Milner and Robin Liddell for the twice-around-the-clock endurance classic. Gavin was only 0.223 seconds off Marc Goossen’s pole-winning pace with the top five cars within 0.240 seconds.
 
“It’s very good,” Gavin said. “We’re there and only a couple tenths of pole. I’m pretty happy with that. We’re obviously right at the beginning of the development curve of this car so that’s pretty awesome. We know we have a lot more to come.”
 
Fortunes were not as good in the No. 3 camp. With Jan Magnussen set to qualify the car, his Corvette developed an electrical and throttle issue that sidelined the Dane’s qualifying run. It was doubly disappointing after Antonio Garcia, Magnussen’s teammate along with Ryan Briscoe, set the class’s fastest time in the morning practice.
 
This year’s Rolex 24 is Corvette Racing’s return to Daytona after winning the race overall in 2001 with a Corvette C5-R. The event also served as the team’s debut race in 1999. The new Corvette C7.R carries on the strong heritage of racing Corvettes – including the C6.R that swept the American Le Mans Series’ GT championships in 2012 and 2013 – with a stronger and lighter aluminum frame that matches the one available in the 2015 Corvette Z06 production car.
 
The C7.R also has a direct-injected V8 engine and the most aggressive aero package developed for a racing Corvette.
 
Television coverage of the Rolex 24 At Daytona will be available on the FOX family of channels, starting with the FOX network’s two-hour broadcast at 2 p.m. The race also will air on FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2, along with overnight streaming video at imsa.com.
 
The TUDOR Championship is the result of a merger between the ALMS and GRAND-AM’s Rolex Sports Car Series. Corvette Racing will compete in 11 races around North America plus the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
 
EDITORS: High-resolution images of Corvette Racing are available on the Team Chevy media site for editorial use only.
 
JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R
“Obviously starting down the order like this changes things a little. It’s still a long, long race but it’s a shame that we didn’t get to have a proper qualifying session and place ourselves on the grid where we deserve to be. I’m not sure of the problem but it was big enough that we couldn’t qualify. We will attack the race from where we start and see what that gets us. It’s not the end of all things, but it’s not optimal either. We can come back from this, I’m sure. We will have to work a little bit harder.”
 
OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R
“I was pretty fortunate that I managed to get a tow from Patrick Long (in a Porsche) on my fastest lap which gave us a tenth of a second. Our car was very strong in the infield section and felt very good. The Michelin tires worked pretty well in the conditions. It was great to get out there and get the first qualifying session done. Where we qualify today has very little impact on how the race will go Saturday and Sunday. Unfortunately we didn’t get that first session due to an electrical problem. Had we gotten that session, could we have gotten a bit closer? Most probably. But it comes down again to a new car and getting everything dialed in. We found that particular problem and it won’t happen again. But it’s interesting times. I’m pleased to be as close as we are.”
 
DOUG FEHAN, CORVETTE RACING PROGRAM MANAGER
“It was a great day for Chevrolet and Corvette Racing as the Chevrolet Corvette C7.R continued to show tremendous competitive potential – evidenced by Oliver Gavin’s very respectable qualifying time in the No. 4 car. With the top five cars within 0.240 seconds, it shows just how close this GT Le Mans class continues to be. Unfortunately, we did have an electrical issue on the No. 3 Corvette, and it was unable to qualify despite having run very strong in the morning and afternoon practice sessions. Rest assured, the Corvette Racing team will diagnose the issue, learn from it and be ready to go for what promises to be a thrilling race.”
 

Chevy Racing–CORVETTE DPs AT DAYTONA

CORVETTE DPs AT DAYTONA: Start of Another Championship Push
Six Corvette DPs in search of overall victory in Rolex 24 At Daytona
 
DETROIT (Jan. 22, 2014) – The months of waiting are nearly over for Corvette Daytona Prototype teams. A new age dawns this weekend with the 52nd Rolex 24 At Daytona and the first round of the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. Six Corvette DPs are on the entry list for one of America’s premier endurance races set for Jan. 25-26 at Daytona International Speedway.
 
The contingent of Corvette DPs returns to Daytona off its second straight GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series DP Engine Manufacturer’s championship and eight race victories in 2013. Nothing would be sweeter than having a Rolex 24 victory as the next feather in its cap. Chevrolet power last won the twice-around-the-clock classic in 2003.
 
Plenty has changed since then. This year’s Rolex 24 officially begins the TUDOR Championship – a merger of the Rolex Series and the American Le Mans Series.
 
“This year’s Rolex 24 At Daytona will be a monumental event, and one where we expect to contend for an overall victory,” said Mark Kent, Chevrolet’s Director of Racing. “Our partner teams have put in a lot of hours preparing for this new era of North American sports car racing. There are a number of unique elements that go into a race like Daytona, and that is magnified by new classes and new competitors. However, we are confident that our Corvette DP teams have the speed and reliability needed to win this great race.”
 
The main prototype category is the featured class with a mix of GRAND-AM Daytona Prototypes racing for the first time against several other prototype machines that made up the ALMS grid a year ago. In an attempt to balance the competition featuring multiple chassis constructors and engine configurations, officials from the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) have adjusted the performance levels of each car.
 
As a result, the Corvette-powered DPs have about 50 more horsepower this season compared to last but mandated aerodynamic features means the cars will create more drag around the circuit.
 
The lineup of Corvette DPs is unchanged from the Roar Before the 24 test days earlier this month: Wayne Taylor Racing, Spirit of Daytona Racing, Action Express Racing (with two Corvette DPs), GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing and newcomer Marsh Racing – stepping up from running a GT Corvette to the Corvette DP.
 
Action Express’ Christian Fittipaldi set the fastest time of the test weekend in the No. 5 Corvette DP at 1:38.630 (129.940 mph). In all, Corvette DPs held five of the first six positions on the time sheets. But as with any long-distance race, speed doesn’t always equal results.
 
“With the merger of GRAND-AM and ALMS, this year’s Rolex 24 provides a set of unique challenges for all the Corvette DP teams,” said Jim Lutz, Chevrolet’s Program Manager for Daytona Prototypes. “It’s an unprecedented situation for those teams who are familiar with GRAND-AM. The pit lane and pit stop rules are different. The rules were changing as late as last weekend. We have more power and more aerodynamic drag, so it’s likely our teams will pit more often than in the past. There is a different mix of classes, and the dynamics of how they will interact with different speeds and capabilities is unknown. So the race becomes very much a challenge of adaption. The teams that do their homework and are the most flexible will be in the best shape.”
 
Chevrolet ended Rolex Series competition with 20 Daytona Prototype victories – 16 by Corvette DPs since it debuted in 2011 – and nine in GT. The Bowtie also captured engine manufacturer championships for DP in both 2012 and 2013, plus the 2011 GT title.
 
Chevrolet also will be well represented in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge’s GS class with the new Camaro Z/28.R production car. Stevenson Motorsports and CKS Autosport each are entered for Friday’s two-and-a-half-hour race.
 
“This year’s DAYTONA Rising 200 presents exciting possibilities for our Chevrolet Camaro Z/28.R teams,” said Lisa Talarico, Chevrolet’s Program  Manager for the IMSA Continental Sports Car Challenge. “This will be a great test of the new Camaro for the rest of the season with a full field of cars and a track that has a mix of long, fast straights but also a tight infield section. We understand there may be challenges with racing a new car for the first time but at the same time we are confident in our teams and engineers.”

Chevy Racing–Corvette Racing at Daytona

CORVETTE RACING AT DAYTONA: Back to Where It All Started
New Chevrolet Corvette C7.Rs to race for first time in TUDOR Championship opener
 
DETROIT (Jan. 21, 2014) – Fifteen years ago, Corvette Racing stepped onto the world’s sports car stage for the first time. Thirteen years ago, it scored a stunning overall victory in the Rolex 24 At Daytona. Now with 90 victories around the world – seven at the 24 Hours of Le Mans – and 10 American Le Mans Series titles, America’s premier production-based sports car team is back at Daytona with a brand new car to contend for a brand new championship.
 
The 52nd running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona will see the competitive debut of the new Chevrolet Corvette C7.R in the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. After several months in black-and-white camouflage, Daytona is the first time the two Corvettes will run in the familiar Corvette Racing velocity yellow. Both cars tested at Daytona as part of the Roar Before the 24 earlier in the month. Oliver Gavin in the No. 4 car was the second-fastest driver in the GT Le Mans class, followed closely by Jan Magnussen in the No. 3 Corvette.
 
Magnussen and Antonio Garcia won the American Le Mans Series’ GT driver’s championship in 2013 with three victories. Gavin and Tommy Milner placed third in the final year of the ALMS before it merged with the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series to create the TUDOR Championship. At Daytona, Ryan Briscoe will join Garcia and Magnussen while Robin Liddell partners with Gavin and Milner.
 
“Corvette sets the standard for Chevrolet regarding technical transfer between racing and production,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet Vice President, Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “The learnings from the race track have helped us design and engineer the new Corvette Z06 for the street and the new C7.R for the track.  We are excited to debut the Corvette C7.R at the Rolex 24 At Daytona and race it all season long in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship’s GTLM class.
 
“In the 2001 24 Hours at Daytona, the #2 Corvette C5-R won its class and the overall race with drivers Ron Fellows, Johnny O’Connell, Chris Kneifel and Franck Freon,” Campbell added. “That history makes returning to the 2014 24 Hours at Daytona with the new Corvette C7.R in the GTLM class extra special. In addition, it will be great to have Corvette DP teams competing for the third consecutive year at Daytona in the Prototype class. We can’t wait to see the Corvette owners and supporters at the track.”
 
In 1999, Corvette Racing made its debut at Daytona with a pair of Corvette C5-Rs. The team placed second overall a year later and won the event in 2001. Times – and technology – have changed since then. The C7.R shares an unprecedented level of attributes with the Z06 – most notably chassis structure, direct injection on the engine front and aerodynamics.
 
Both the C7.R and Z06 share the same production-based aluminum frame, both of which are built at Corvette’s assembly plant in Bowling Green, Ky. The chassis is 40 percent stronger than on the outgoing Corvette C6.R, which results in better handling and stability at high speeds.
Direct injection also returns to a racing Corvette for the first time since the GT1 era that ended in 2009. There are two main gains to be expected. One is better throttle control and response from the engine under power. The other is a gain in fuel efficiency – up to a 3 percent improvement on the C6.R. Those savings have the potential to add up in a race as long as the Rolex 24.
 
From an aerodynamic standpoint, the package on the C7.R is the most aggressive in the Corvette Racing era. Some of the features carried over from the C6.R to the 2014 Corvette Stingray production car including forward-tilted radiator, functional hood and front-quarter panel vents, and rear transmission and differential cooling intakes. From there, engineers improved the aero details on the C7.R and Z06 with similar front splitters, rocker panels, and front- and rear-brake cooling ducts.
 
All those factors and other improvements from the C6.R give Corvette Racing an excellent chance to get the C7.R era started on the right foot… err, wheel.
 
“This is a great start for a new era of Corvette Racing,” said Mark Kent, Director of Racing for Chevrolet. “The Corvette C7.R represents new levels of technology in a number of areas that improve on the championship-winning legacy of the C6.R. It has been fascinating watching the development of the car over the last few months and we all are excited to finally see it in competition.”
 
Television coverage of the Rolex 24 At Daytona will be available on the FOX family of channels, starting with the FOX network’s two-hour broadcast at 2 p.m. The race also will air on FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2, along with overnight streaming video at imsa.com.
 
The TUDOR Championship is the result of a merger between the ALMS and GRAND-AM’s Rolex Sports Car Series. Corvette Racing will compete in 11 races around North America plus the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
 

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