Daytona 24: Synergy Racing race report

Synergy Racing scores sixth place finish in Rolex 24 At Daytona DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (27 January 2008) -- After a full day and night of racing in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the No. 80 EMC Mechanical/Gamewell Mechanical/NETTTS Porsche 911 of Mark ...

Synergy Racing scores sixth place finish in Rolex 24 At Daytona

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (27 January 2008) -- After a full day and night of racing in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the No. 80 EMC Mechanical/Gamewell Mechanical/NETTTS Porsche 911 of Mark Greenberg, Jan Heylen, Lance Arnold, and Damien Faulkner finished sixth in the GT class in the opening round of 2008 Rolex Sports Car Series competition.

The sister Synergy Racing No. 81 of Steve Johnson, Robert Doornbos, Patrick Huisman, and Richard Lietz completed 558 laps in the EMC Mechanical/Gamewell Mechanical/Lowes/Fed-Ex Kinkos 911 to take 23rd in the GT class results.

Both team entries led the GT class on multiple occasions with different Synergy Racing drivers taking turns in front of the massive GT field at different stages of the race, but despite on-track contact from other cars and a variety of challenges that only 24 hours of racing can create, the two team cars held on to score the coveted checkered flag at Daytona.

The No. 80 Synergy Racing entry clocked off 651 laps to cover more miles than a trip to New York City to Daytona Beach and back during the race. The Synergy entry started the race from sixth on the grid after Heylen qualified the machine as one of the top Porsche entries on the 66-car field before coming across the finish line in the sixth position.

"I finished sixth in this race in 1998 so it's nice to take that result again one decade later," said Greenberg. "We were hoping to push for fifth at the finish there but it just didn't happen. Still, to make it to the end of this race is really satisfying. Without the wave-bys and the split starts like Grand-Am has used in the past, it was a huge challenge to make up laps later in the race. But this was a great effort and I really enjoyed racing with Synergy. Cole (Scrogham) really knows what he's doing and puts a great team around the drivers."

"We were one of the fastest cars out there and as a driver, that's all you can do in a race like this," said Heylen. "I've been in other 24 hour races, but I loved this event. It was a great opportunity to race a 911 and while we had some setbacks early on to overcome, it was a good effort from everyone. I think they should look at changing the rules with the yellows and those procedures to keep things tighter. But in any case, to complete all 24 hours and to overcome some of the problems we had and go on to take sixth is not bad at all. It's a tough event, but I'm already hoping to be back again!"

Synergy, which has a long history of racing with the famed Porsche marque, had the weekend start on the wrong foot with the 80 machine with a crash in practice, but like a heavyweight boxer, the team kept in the ring no matter what came at them, and delivered two strong running Porsches all the way to the finish.

"We showed we had fast cars and good drivers with the time we spent out front of this huge GT field, but we just didn't have the racing fortune with us all night long," said Synergy Racing principal Cole Scrogham. "They are always tough of course, but this 24 was full of challenges for us this time around. Our crew really stepped up to the plate and our drivers delivered for us out on track even when we got some bad luck handed our way. This one didn't turn out the way we wanted, but we'll be back again no question!"

-credit: sr

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Patrick Huisman , Damien Faulkner , Robert Doornbos , Mark Greenberg , Jan Heylen , Steve Johnson , Richard Lietz