Krohn Racing prepared for January Daytona 24H test

Krohn Racing press release

Krohn Racing Geared up for Daytona Test Days In Preparation for 50th Annual Rolex 24

Krohn Racing, 2011 Daytona24
Krohn Racing, 2011 Daytona24

Photo by: Eric Gilbert

The Krohn Racing team is elated to return with a “dream team” of drivers to the historic Daytona International Speedway this week for Daytona Test Days, January 6-8, 2012. The popular lime green-and blue liveried team will test their No. 76 Krohn Racing Ford Proto-Auto Lola in preparation for the 50th Annual Rolex 24 at Daytona. Team owner/driver Tracy W. Krohn brings back his co-drivers Nic Jönsson, from Sweden and now living in Buford, Georgia, former F1 ace Brazilian Ricardo Zonta and All-American motorsports rising star Colin Braun, all seeking their first victory at the 3.56-mile Florida superspeedway/road course.

The 2012 year will mark Krohn Racing’s seventh appearance as a team at the Rolex 24 at Daytona. Krohn and Jönsson have competed in all six previous events. Zonta will make his fifth appearance, competing each year since 2008. This year will be Braun’s fourth appearance with the Krohn team (2006, 2007, and 2010). All four Krohn Racing drivers have been on the podium at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but have not yet done so at the twice-around-the-clock Daytona enduro.

TRACY W. KROHN, Team Owner/Driver No. 76 Krohn Racing Ford Proto-Auto Lola:

Your team has finished in the Top 6 in four out of six Rolex 24 at Daytona races, including two fourth place finishes. Is 2012 the year for Krohn Racing to be on the podium?

“That’s always the goal! We never race for second place. I hope 2012 is our year to win Daytona.”

Krohn Racing was awarded an entry to the 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans with your class victory at Petit Le Mans in 2011 and is the only race team currently confirmed to compete in both the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2012. That is a very special designation. As an American team owner/driver, how does that make you feel?

“I’m certainly proud to be the only American team to compete at both the 24 Hours of Daytona and Le Mans. I don’t understand why more teams don’t do it. If you want to show the world your endurance racing skills, these are the two races to do it. Even though we haven’t won either yet, we’ve been on the podium twice at Le Mans and nearly made it at Daytona a couple of times. I’m quite certain we will achieve our goal…maybe even this year.”

Krohn Racing spent 2011 competing in the ILMC endurance series around the world. Has Krohn Racing become something of an endurance race specialist?

“Competing in the ILMC (WEC) this year has been a good experience and gained additional knowledge for everyone about endurance racing. The team and drivers are no strangers to endurance racing though as it has been part of the racing model since we started Krohn Racing. I think we have all improved in our knowledge and skills of endurance racing.”

NIC JONSSON, Driver, No. 76 Krohn Racing Ford Proto-Auto Lola:

Krohn Racing is returning to the Rolex 24 for the seventh year with the same Krohn Racing team and the same drivers from years past (including same line-up as 2010) seeking that coveted 24 Hours of Daytona victory. How does that continuity help on the race track?

“I am always a big believer in continuity. The more continuity you can have in a team and with your driver line-up, the more success you are going to have. It’s just one of those things that become second nature. You don’t have to talk as much because you know each other so well. Having the luxury of bringing back guys that are world-class drivers for the Krohn Racing driver roster, along with having the same crew every year going strong is a great strength we have coming into Daytona.”

The Krohn Racing team has finished in the Top 6 in four out of six Daytona 24 hour races, including two fourth place finishes. Is 2012 the year for Krohn Racing to be on the podium?

“I wish I could say yes, for sure. That’s definitely the goal going there as we enter our seventh year for the Rolex 24. 2012 is definitely the year we are putting everything into it with the driver line-up continuity and class of the drivers we have. Tracy has done a phenomenal job over the past 12-18 months improving his driving, not just from a speed perspective but from a consistency view. He runs very good, consistent lap times lap after lap. It’s no secret to have four drivers that can run very consistent lap times is the recipe to winning a 24-hour race, especially Daytona. Also, the engineers and mechanics have done a great job to fine-tune the Proto-Auto Lola for us. I’m very positive and can’t wait to get going.”

RICARDO ZONTA, Driver No. 76 Krohn Racing Ford Proto-Auto Lola:

This year is the 50th anniversary of the Rolex 24 at Daytona race. What would it mean to win the race on such a milestone year?

“It will be very important for us to win, especially now on the 50th anniversary of the 24 Hours of Daytona.”

The Krohn Racing team has been doing a lot of endurance racing over the years and has the same engineers and crew basically since they formed in 2006. Add to that the same driver line-up. Does that continuity help on the race track?

“Of course this continuity helps, especially when the team knows what the style of its drivers is and how they can improve by helping with the race strategy.”

How difficult do you expect competition to be this year for the Rolex 24?

“Every year since I have been competing at the 24 Hours with Krohn since 2008, it has been a very competitive race. There are always many experienced drivers and teams competing. We expect it to be another big challenge.”

COLIN BRAUN, Driver, No. 76 Krohn Racing Ford Proto-Auto Lola:

The Krohn Racing team has been doing a lot of endurance racing over the years and has the same crew basically since they formed in 2006. Add to that the same stellar driver line-up. Does that continuity play a part on the race track?

“I think it plays a huge part. The core group of people is the same as when I first started with the team back in 2006. It’s neat to be able to go to the race track every year and know the Krohn team and it’s the same people I worked with year after year. That continuity just helps everybody be comfortable with where they’re at and what they’re doing. I think that leads to a more prepared race car and easier time for everybody. We all know what our jobs are. We all know what to do and it’s a very comforting and comfortable environment. I think when you go to the race track being comfortable and know what you’re going to be doing and not have a lot of changes and personnel shake-ups and things you have to learn all the time, it just makes you that much more successful.”

I imagine you've been doing some research and keep up with the Grand-Am DP competition for Daytona. How difficult do you expect competition to be this year?

“I think it’s going to be a big challenge. Every year people get very excited and you see all these teams come out of the woodwork. It’s amazing the number of cars they get for Daytona. This being the fiftieth anniversary, I think you’re going to see more than the normal amount. It’s going to be tough. Me, Nic, Tracy and Ricardo are all going to have to have our ‘A’ game. The guys are going to have to do a really good job preparing the race car. David Brown is planning to try quite a few things to give us a fast car. We’re all capable of winning the race. We just have to have a few things go our way and be there at the end. I think we have a really good shot to win the race. That would certainly make for a great start for the season.”

This is the 50th anniversary of the Rolex 24 at Daytona race. What would it mean to win the race on such a milestone year?

“I couldn’t think of a better year to win the race, obviously being the 50th anniversary. It’s going to be very special and certainly a memorable year. I think people are really going to look back at the history of that race and that’s going to be one that stands out. However, anytime you can win the 24 Hours of Daytona, it’s going to be a memorable year. It would be neat to win the 50th anniversary, but more than anything, I want to get a Rolex watch one of these days!”

DAVID BROWN, Krohn Racing Team Manager and Engineer:

Krohn Racing spent 2011 competing in the ILMC endurance series around the world. Has Krohn Racing become something of an endurance race specialist?

“We like endurance racing! Maybe it is through masochism, but probably because we enjoy the challenge of having to prepare, setup and run the car for a long race. It’s a discipline which we feel we manage well.”

The Krohn Racing team has finished in the Top 6 in four out of six Rolex 24 races, including two fourth place finishes. Is 2012 the year for Krohn Racing to be on the podium?

“Yes! It’s about time, and more than that, we should be winning the race!”

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Series GRANDAM
Tags braun, ford, jonsson, krohn, lola, rolex, zonta