Homestead-Miami tire test preview

Hoosier Tire Test at Homestead-Miami Speedway to Provide First Look at 2006 Rolex Series Lineup DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 2, 2005) -- An interesting mix of proven competitors and newcomers of the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series ...

Hoosier Tire Test at Homestead-Miami Speedway to Provide First Look at 2006 Rolex Series Lineup

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 2, 2005) -- An interesting mix of proven competitors and newcomers of the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal will provide the first sneak preview of the 2006 season with the two-day Hoosier Tire Test at Homestead-Miami Speedway on December 5-6.

Newly-crowned 2005 Daytona Prototype co-champions Max Angelelli and Wayne Taylor head a 20-car Daytona Prototype entry for the test in their No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley. Also on the list are Luis Diaz and 2004 Daytona Prototype co-champion Scott Pruett in the No. 01 CompUSA Chip Ganassi Racing Lexus Riley, as well as past Rolex Series race winner Andy Wallace in the No. 2 Howard-Boss Motorsports Pontiac Crawford.

A handful of other previous race-winners will be testing new combinations in Homestead, as 2005 La Gran Final de la Serie Rolex Sports Car winners Michael McDowell and Memo Gidley will be on-hand to test their new No. 19 Ford Crawford for Finlay Motorsports, while David Donohue and Darren Law will test the brand-new Porsche Daytona Prototype engine in Brumos Racing's No. 58 Fabcar.

Other Rolex Series veteran teams on the entry list include Brian Tuttle in the No. 7 Tuttle Team Racing/SAMAX Pontiac Riley, Burt and Brian Frisselle in the No. 8 Rx.com/Synergy Racing Doran with new Porsche power, Marc-Antoine Camirand and 2005 Star Mazda champion Raphael Matos in the No. 09 Spirit of Daytona Racing Pontiac Crawford, Chris Bingham and Randy Ruhlman in the No. 15 CB Motorsports Pontiac Riley, and Mark Patterson and Oswaldo Negri Jr. in the No. 60 Flight Options Lexus Riley for Michael Shank Racing.

Relative Rolex Series newcomers Alex Figge and Ryan Dalziel--who made their respective Daytona Prototype debuts in the Mexico City season finale--will also participate in the test in the No. 89 Pacific Coast Motorsports Pontiac Riley.

While preseason testing provides an opportunity to see what changes established teams have made for the coming year, perhaps the most exciting aspect is to catch a glimpse of new teams as they prepare for their first year in the Rolex Series. The Hoosier Tire Test will be no exception, as there will be no shortage of interesting newcomers.

Leading the way in that regard will be Cheever Racing with its new No. 39 Lexus Crawford to be co-driven at the test by team owner and 1998 Indianapolis 500 winner Eddie Cheever and 2004 Rolex 24 At Daytona overall winner Christian Fittipaldi. Given its past success in Indy Car racing and a pair of intriguing drivers, this team will undoubtedly garner plenty of attention during its two days in South Florida.

Another Daytona Prototype newcomer sure to be popular in Homestead is Alex Job Racing/Emory Motorsport, which will have Porsche factory driver Mike Rockenfeller and Patrick Long behind the wheel of its No. 23 Porsche Crawford. Big things could be in store for this new program as Alex Job Racing has had considerable success in sports car racing with Porsche.

While the team is not new to the Rolex Series, Finlay Motorsports will test a second brand-new Ford Crawford, with team owner Rob Finlay and former Toyota Atlantic standout Michael Valiante slated to share the team's No. 27 machine. Another intriguing new entry is the No. 12 Group Four/CCP Racing Ford Multimatic to be co-driven by 2005 Cooper Series F2000 champion Jay Howard and Cooper Series standouts Nick Boulle and Enzo Pottolichio. Testing for Truspeed Motorsports, Rob and Charles Morgan will share the No. 47 Pontiac Riley, another new addition to the Rolex Series ranks.

Other Daytona Prototypes entered with drivers yet to be named include the No. 02 Lexus Riley for Chip Ganassi Racing, the No. 9 Hyper Sport Infiniti Doran, the No. 77 Doran Racing Ford Doran and the No. 91 RVO Motorsports Pontiac Fabcar.

In the GT ranks, nine race cars and some equally interesting combinations have been entered for the Hoosier Tire Test. After a strong finish to the 2005 campaign, the two-car TRG Pontiac GTO.R program returns to the track with GT runners-up Marc Bunting and Andy Lally once again sharing the team's No. 65 machine and Paul Edwards and Jan Magnussen in the team's No. 64 car.

Miami-based Goldin Brothers Racing will also be in attendance with its No. 08 Mazda RX-8 in the hands of Scott Finlay and Steve and Keith Goldin. Another South Florida-based Mazda RX-8 that will surely gather plenty of looks is the No. 70 SpeedSource Mazda RX-8 in the hands of 2005 Grand-Am Cup Series Sport Touring (ST) champion David Haskell and the winningest driver in Grand-Am Cup Series history, Sylvain Tremblay.

After a solid 2005 season, Tafel Racing will bring an intriguing driver lineup to the Hoosier Tire Test, as team owner and driver Jim Tafel will share the team's No. 73 Porsche GT3 Cup with Eric Lux, Robin Liddell, and 16-year-old Graham Rahal--the son of three-time Champ Car champion and 1986 Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Rahal.

While the team made its first Rolex Series appearance in the Crown Royal 250 at The Glen paddock in September, Canadian All American Racing has entered its No. 34 Pontiac Grand-Am for the Hoosier Tire Test. The car is slated to be driven by Montreal's Zave Aberman. The No. 36 TPC Racing Porsche GT3 Cup, and a pair of TRG Porsche GT3s (No. 68 and No. 69) have also been entered, although those teams have not yet named their drivers.

The Hoosier Tire Test gets underway on Monday, December 5 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and will be open to media as well as the public. Race fans interested in attending may do so free of charge, and may view the proceedings from the Club Grandstands along the front straightaway.

-garra-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Andy Wallace , Chris Bingham , Ryan Dalziel , Paul Edwards , Jan Magnussen , Eddie Cheever , Memo Gidley , Bobby Rahal , Christian Fittipaldi , Scott Pruett , Graham Rahal , Marc-Antoine Camirand , Michael Valiante , Luis Diaz , Randy Ruhlman , David Haskell , Andy Lally , Darren Law , David Donohue , Michael McDowell , Max Angelelli , Sylvain Tremblay , Patrick Long , Alex Figge , Oswaldo Negri Jr. , Marc Bunting , Chip Ganassi , Zave Aberman , Mike Rockenfeller , Jim Tafel , Scott Finlay , Eric Lux , Rob Finlay , Alex Job , Brian Tuttle , Jay Howard , Nicholas Boulle , Enzo Pottolichio , Michael Shank
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Doran Racing , Alex Job Racing , SpeedSource , Michael Shank Racing