Alex Job Racing Has Successful Roar Before The Rolex 24 at Daytona
Tavares, FL, (Jan. 10, 2012), Alex Job Racing (AJR) had a successful weekend of testing at the Roar Before The Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway in preparation for the 50th Anniversary GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series Rolex 24 At Daytona, Jan. 28-29, 2012.
The Florida-based team was in full effect with two cars: the No. 23 WeatherTech/Alex Job Racing Porsche for drivers Cooper MacNeil, Butch Leitzinger, Emmanuel Collard and Porsche factory driver, Marco Holzer; and in the No. 24 McKenna Porsche/Battery Tender/Kensington/Koss Stereophones/Alex Job Racing GT3 Cup Michael Avenatti, Bob Faieta, Bill Sweedler, Fred Poordad, and Cort Wagner.
For the No. 23 WeatherTech/Alex Job Racing Porsche car it was a smooth weekend with no issues and fast lap times. The 23 crew came away from the three-day test with the badge for being the fastest Porsche, posting a lap time of 1:49.423, third fastest overall in the GT category.
The No. 24 McKenna Porsche/Battery Tender/Alex Job Racing GT3 wasn't so lucky. In the opening laps of Saturday's night practice, Michael Avenatti was exiting Turn Five with another GT competitor when the No 01 Daytona Prototype tried to go up the middle of the two GT cars and turned in on Avenatti resulting in front end damage to the Porsche. The AJR crew made quick work on repairs and had the 24 back on track the next morning. The incident ended the weekend for the Ganassi team.
"I had two separate incidents, both with the 01 DP (Daytona Prototype) car on the track," Avenatti said. "The big contact occurred early during our night practice on Saturday causing significant damage to our car. AJR did a remarkable job getting the car repaired overnight Saturday and back on the track Sunday. Our focus was getting everyone comfortable in the car and ensuring that we have the right handling set-up for the race."
"AJR did a great job prepping the car and all drivers did what we set out to do," Faieta said. "I am new to the 24, so I was being cautious and courteous. Our focus was to get a handle on the track and slowly work up to speed. We worked with our engineer (Greg Fordahl) to develop a winning car."
The 23 drivers had a clean run over the three-days of testing and tuning.
"We really had the WeatherTech/AJR Porsche handling great right from the start of the weekend," MacNeil said. "I never had any close moments on the track. Going into the test, our goal was to run clean and take it one lap at a time. We didn't want to hurt the car in any way, but we also wanted to develop it and make it as fast as possible. We accomplished all of these things. The plan for the race is to qualify well and run clean, especially for the first eight hours. I think we will see a significant amount of yellows, hopefully we won't be a part of any."
Team owner, Alex Job, had his two cars up to speed and provided his drivers maximum laps in preparation for the big race at the end of the month.
"We wanted to make sure that we got all the drivers a lot of laps and everyone comfortable with all of the technical aspects of the car," Job said. "We were not looking for all out speed. We made some long runs and everyone was able to find their comfort zone in the car, traffic, and on the track. The incident with the 01 was very unfortunate, but that's racing. He just came over on Michael and caused a lot of needless damage to two cars, especially his. We ended the weekend third overall on the GT time sheet giving us a good feeling heading back there in two weeks."
Alex Job Racing is one of the most successful teams in sports car racing with 39 wins, including a 1999 Rolex 24 Hour GT Class win. This record is supported by 46 pole positions and 84 podium finishes. The team has won three championships (GT in 2002, 2003 and 2004) complimented by their two GT class wins at Le Mans. The team also boasts seven Sebring 12-hour wins.
The Grand-Am category is specific to one of the most popular factory produced racing cars in the world, the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.Developed for Porsche's one-make series around the world, the new version of the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup is based on the road-going 911 GT3 RS. The power unit featured in the new 911 GT3 Cup is largely identical to the production engine of the 911 GT3 RS with the same output of 450 bhp and the same maximum engine speed of 8,500 rpm.