Sebring: Panoz Motor Sports Wednesday practice notes

Panoz Motor Sports' attack on the 50th Anniversary Twelve Hours of Sebring continued to make strong strides in the opening day of official practice today. Jan Magnussen led the attack to the leading Audis, stopping the clocks at 1 minute, 51.583...

Panoz Motor Sports' attack on the 50th Anniversary Twelve Hours of Sebring continued to make strong strides in the opening day of official practice today.

Jan Magnussen led the attack to the leading Audis, stopping the clocks at 1 minute, 51.583 seconds in the morning practice session.

David Donohue.
Photo by Panoz Motor Sports.

Magnussen, David Brabham and Eric van de Poele all sampled the car during the morning session while Bryan Herta left the #51 machine to his new team-mates, David Donohue and Bill Auberlen.

"We are still able to squeeze a reasonable time out of the car but we still have a bit of work to do to improve the car," Magnussen said.

"The guys were set to try a few more changes in the afternoon but we had a half-shaft failure. The bumps give the car a really hard time at this circuit and that is probably what caused the problem.

"We were going to change the rear end for tomorrow's qualifying anyway, but it was unfortunate because we lost a little track time."

David Brabham.
Photo by Sean V. Stringer.

With Donohue having only previously sampled the Panoz for a brief test in December and Auberlen never having driven the car before this week's race - both new drivers were given extended sessions aboard the #51 car.

"I have become a lot more comfortable in the car today with some extra laps under my belt," Auberlen said.

"The car makes fantastic downforce through the fast corners and I am really starting to enjoy the car.

"It was important for David and I to get comfortable with the car before Bryan gets stuck into qualifying tomorrow."

Qualifying for the prototype cars for the 50th Anniversary Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring - Presented by Dodge, kicks off at 2.30pm tomorrow.

The team will also enjoy a one-hour practice session during the morning as well as a the first night session tomorrow evening for an hour at 8.00pm. Saturday's 12-hour marathon begins at 10.00am.

WEDNESDAY COMBINED TIMES 1. - Biela/Kristensen/Pirro, Audi R8 - 1:49.001
2. - Capello/Herbert/Pescatori, Audi R8 - 1:50.486
3. - Brabham/Magnussen/Van de Poele, Panoz Motor Sports - 1:51.583
4. - Bernard/Collard/Lehto, Cadillac - 1:51.765
5. - Wallace/Lammers/Johansson, Audi R8 - 1:51.943
6. - Taylor/Angelelli/Tinseau, Cadillac - 1:52.621
7. - Matthews/Smith/Goossens, Riley & Scott - 1:52.640
8. - Herta/Donohue/Auberlen, Panoz Motor Sports - 1:52.826

-pms-

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers David Brabham , Jan Magnussen , Bryan Herta , Eric van de Poele , Bill Auberlen , David Donohue