Daytona race Terry Borcheller had a short stint in the Rolex Sports Car Series race at Daytona International Speedway Thursday evening. The Gainesville, Ga., driver started the No. 54 Bell Motorsports/Feeds the Need Pontiac-powered Doran JE4...
Terry Borcheller had a short stint in the Rolex Sports Car Series race at Daytona International Speedway Thursday evening. The Gainesville, Ga., driver started the No. 54 Bell Motorsports/Feeds the Need Pontiac-powered Doran JE4 from 19th on the Daytona Prototype grid, after his qualifying time was disallowed because of his position on track when a black flag was displayed. He had a fast race start, gaining six positions in the first two laps of the distance-determined 70-lap race on the 3.56-mile infield road course. His charge stopped when he hit oil dropped on track by another competitor, zapping him into a barrier. The car could not be repaired in time to return to the race.
"Everything was fine one second, and then the next second it wasn't. I didn't really know what happened; it happened so fast. The corner worker said there was oil down, so I asked, 'Why was mine the only car that crashed?' He said three other cars went off, but I was going the fastest," Borcheller reported.
He was disappointed because the car was working well, a tribute to the Bell/FTN crew who worked hard to prepare for the single-day event that crammed practice, qualifying and race in one track day, rather than the usual three- or four-day race weekend.
"The guys did a phenomenal job. It was really a thrash trying to do everything in one day. The car wasn't hurt that bad; the big thing was that the team worked so hard. I just wanted to bring them a good finish," Borcheller said.
Lime Rock preview
Following the Daytona race, Borcheller caught a late-night flight to Lakeville, Conn., to prepare for a two-hour 45-minute American Le Mans Series race at Lime Rock Park on July 4. Borcheller hopes to repeat his performance of 2004, when he qualified his Saleen S7R just 0.066 seconds behind the dominant Corvettes in the GTS class.
"We've done a lot of testing and work with the Saleen S7R and we are really looking forward to the benefits of that at Lime Rock," he said. "I like Lime Rock a lot. We did very well there last year against Corvette. Because we were so close last year and with the improvements that we've made to the car, it brings a lot of optimism that we will be competitive."
Due to local noise restrictions, the ALMS drivers and crews will enjoy a day off on Sunday, returning to race on Monday. Borcheller said the rest will be valuable, but he'll miss his family on the U.S. Independence Day holiday.
"The Fourth of July is one of my favorite holidays. I love the race and I love Lime Rock, but I'm always a little bummed when I'm not with my family for the Fourth of July. I'm just there by myself and it's kind of a drag," he said. "But having the day off will be good to relax and get focused for the race. Also, the crew will have a little extra time to lean on the car."
The American Le Mans Series race is scheduled for Monday, July 4 from 3 pm to 5:45 pm on the 1.54-mile Lime Rock Park road course in Lakeville, Conn. The race will be televised live on Speed Channel from 3 pm to 6 pm.