Rain welcomed first-time Rolex 24 Hour competitors, and Audi factory drivers, Edoardo Mortara (Italy), Filipe Alburquerque (Portugal), Oliver Jarvis (England) and returning American driver Dion von Moltke (Coral Gables, Florida) for the first practice on Friday at "World Center of Racing." The weather improved over the three-day test as Alex Job Racing together with the Audi Sport customer racing engineering support team put maximum miles on the No. 24 WeatherTech Audi R8 around the 3.56-mile, 12-turn Daytona International Speedway modified oval road course. The team posted their fast lap of 1:49.352 putting them sixth overall on the GT time sheet for the weekend.
"It has gone really well," von Moltke said. "We are building a nice chemistry within the Alex Job Racing team. My new teammates from Audi and the technicians from Audi Sport customer racing are really working well together. We have been making a lot of changes with the car and little by little we have gotten faster. We have a long list of things to work on between the test and the race. Over the next two weeks Alex and the team will improve the car to make us even stronger for the race. I went to Formula Medicine over the winter, and they have me on a mental and physical program that I will continue right through to the race. You have to be able to perform at your peak in an uncomfortable situation. I prepare myself as much as possible for every situation. I will be ready."
"It has been a great experience driving around Daytona with all the traffic and the fast DP cars," Alburquerque said. "It is my first time driving in a series where I am not in the fastest car. This is a little strange for me, but I like it. The banking is fun, going high up and then back down is quite nice. I am really enjoying driving here at Daytona. I am going to go home and play some more on my simulator and try some different lines. I will also call my friend Joao Barbosa and maybe get some tips from him. The first time on the banking I was almost flat all the way. It was fun. It is new to me, and I really like running the car up near the wall."
"It was amazing when I drove through the tunnel and saw the banking and all of the seats here at Daytona," Mortara said. "I have seen NASCAR races on TV, but it is really something special seeing it in person. The team all worked well together. We were able to do some laps in the wet and in the dry which is nice preparation for the race in two weeks. The Audi R8 was really nice to drive and the team really worked well together."
Alex Job is happy with the first outing of the WeatherTech Audi R8 GRAND-AM at Daytona.
"I think that our team worked well with the Audi Sport customer racing technical staff," Job said. "Edoardo, Oliver and Filipe drove Daytona for the first time and learned the circuit very fast, like we knew they would. Dion is a veteran here and was able to get right down to business. Together with the Audi engineers we were able to accomplish all of the listed technical items and go away with a good feeling for the race. We were even able to get in some rain laps on Friday, which will be valuable data, just in case we encounter that at the end of the month. I am impressed with the R8. I am also proud of the way our two organizations worked together."
Alex Job Racing