Cheever Racing pleased with FABCAR changes

Cheever Racing Pleased with Change to FABCAR Indianapolis, Ind. (March 28, 2007) -- It's beautiful, and it's fast. The newly redesigned FABCAR chassis, a compilation of work between engineers at Crown Royal Cheever Racing and FABCAR, is...

Cheever Racing Pleased with Change to FABCAR

Indianapolis, Ind. (March 28, 2007) -- It's beautiful, and it's fast.

The newly redesigned FABCAR chassis, a compilation of work between engineers at Crown Royal Cheever Racing and FABCAR, is drawing raves and making its mark in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series.

The new design made its second appearance in Grand-Am's Daytona Prototype class last weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The Cheever Racing team started sixth and driver Christian Fittipaldi led nine laps with the Crown Royal FABCAR-Porsche Daytona Prototype, before an extra pit stop to repair bodywork damaged from an on-track incident led the team to finish 14th.

Despite the finish the crew who helped design and fabricate the car were pleased with the progress.

"This is the culmination of many hours of hard work, in a condensed period of time, by both the Cheever Racing and FABCAR crews, and, for the guys who put it together, it's like a child," said Eddie Cheever Jr., owner of Cheever Racing. "They've been with it since birth, they've watched it take its first steps, and now they're watching as it starts to run. They're very proud of this car."

The pride lies in the story behind the creation. After Cheever Racing's first season in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series the team sought a stronger relationship with a chassis manufacturer that could focus on the Porsche engine for the 2007 season. In their search, Cheever Racing tested a Brumos Porsche FABCAR at a winter test at Daytona International Speedway.

After inspecting and studying the FABCAR for a few weeks the team agreed it had potential. They switched from a Crawford to a FABCAR chassis and began the process of melding chassis and engine into one competitive product.

"We stuck our finger in the pie, and we liked what we discovered," Cheever said of FABCAR. "The FABCAR chassis was built around the Porsche engine, so we had a perfect match to start with. From there, we starting tweaking the aerodynamics, and eventually, in cooperation with FABCAR's engineers, we came up with a new, sleeker version of the car. This new car capitalized on all the work done previously by Brumos and Porsche."

That version of the No. 39 Crown Royal Cheever Racing Porsche FABCAR debuted in a Grand-Am race in Mexico City on March 4. It ran among the leaders at the start of the race before a driveshaft problem forced retirement.

Drivers Christian Fittipaldi and Harrison Brix expect further improvement with the new design, a sleek, low-to-the-ground work of art that has generated more than its share of compliments.

"The work our engineers did in conjunction with FABCAR's engineers created a slick body that lowered drag while helping the car in terms of downforce. It cuts through the air more efficiently, especially at high speed tracks like Daytona. Not only does it look sharp, but it moves fast."

Overall, the partnership with FABCAR has been fruitful for Cheever Racing.

"We've been more than pleased with our association with FABCAR," Cheever said. "It's a very nice fit for us. They've been in Grand-Am from the start, they've got a built-in relationship with Porsche, and it's a good, solid race car. We've worked quite well together. For us, it was a shoe that fit."

-credit: cr

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Christian Fittipaldi , Harrison Brix