DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – official series release — Jerry Markland/Getty Images North America photo —
Living up to its billing as a dress rehearsal for the 53rd Rolex 24 At Daytona, Saturday’s second day of the Roar Before the Rolex 24 featured four sessions of TUDOR United SportsCar Championship practice, including a special 90-minute nighttime session.
Jordan Taylor ran the fastest lap of the day, going 1:39.181 (129.218 mph) in Wayne Taylor Racing’s No. 10 Konica Minolta Corvette DP shared by his brother Ricky Taylor and Max Angelelli. The three-day test wraps up with a pair of Sunday practice sessions beginning at 10:20 a.m. ET.
“These days you need to have the fastest car because when you get to the final hour [of the race] you need to race everyone,” said Taylor. “Five years ago we wouldn’t focus on a lap-time car; we’d just make it as comfortable as possible. Now you need to work on lap times and race pace because you know you’re going to come to that last hour having to race for the win.”
Sebastien Bourdais ran the second-fastest lap of the day in the closing minutes of night practice, running 1:39.310 (129.050 mph) in the defending champion No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette DP. He was followed by Ozz Negri the No. 60 Michael Shank Racing with Curb/Agajanian Ligier JS P2/Honda, 1:39.342 (129.009 mph).
Other class leaders were Colin Braun in Prototype Challenge (PC), running 1:41.769 (125.932 mph) in the No. 54 CORE autosport ORECA FLM09; Earl Bamber in GT Le Mans (GTLM), 1:44.316 (122.857 mph) in the No. 912 Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR; and Marc Goossens in GT Daytona (GTD) at 1:47.373 (119.360 mph) in the No. 33 TI Automotive/ViperExchange.com Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R.
- An unfamiliar name to North American sports car fans led the day’s final night practice in the GTD class. Christopher Zoechling – a 26-year-old German Porsche Supercup driver – ran a lap of 1:47.495 (119.224 mph) in a Porsche 911 GT America from Konrad Motorsport.
- Porsche Motorsport North America is celebrating Alex Job Racing’s first 25 years in sports car racing this weekend. “From his experience in the automotive retail business to his success as a driver and mechanic, Alex has all the tools to run a productive motorsports operation, and his championships over the 25 years of Alex Job Racing have proven he can put that rubber to the road,” said Porsche Motorsport North America president and CEO Jens Walther. “And we’re proud that he has chosen Porsche as his preferred marque.”
- The No. 0 DeltaWing Racing Cars with Claro/TracFone DWC-13 team was forced back to its race shop in Braselton, Georgia after an incident in Saturday’s afternoon session. The prototype sustained damage after another car hit the wall on the front straight just ahead of driver Memo Rojas. The team was working through the resulting differences in downforce when Rojas lost control in the kink and tapped the wall. The team decided the damage was too significant to repair at the track.
- Byron DeFoor escaped injury when he flipped the No. 50 Fifty Plus Racing Endures for a Cure Dinan/Riley after encountering a mechanical problem entering turn one in the morning session. Other drivers evaluated and released from the infield care center after on-track incidents were Francois Perrodo, driver of the No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia and Jerome Mee, driver of the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA FLM09.
CREDIT: IMSA/TUDOR Championship