Marsal set for LMPC debut at Daytona with 8Star

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Marsal has been tabbed by Florida-based 8Star Motorsports to compete for the 2014 TPNAEC in the LMPC Class.

Daytona Beach, Fla. - As the next chapter in North American sports car racing is set to open with the Rolex 24 At Daytona, Michael Marsal will be a part of the history-making event as IMSA stages the first-ever TUDOR United SportsCar Championship race at Daytona International Speedway.

Marsal has been tabbed by Florida-based 8Star Motorsports to compete for the 2014 Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup (TPNAEC) in the LMPC Class. The young New Yorker will share the driving duties in the LMPC effort with Tom Kimber-Smith as well as 8Star Team Principal Enzo Pottolicchio.

With its own scoring system and championship to fight for, the TPNAEC is comprised of the biggest events on the 2014 calendar, starting in Daytona with the 24 and then heading to Sebring for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida on March 15; the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen at Watkins Glen International on June 29; and then closing with the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans Powered by Mazda at Road Atlanta on Oct. 4.

Michael Marsal
Michael Marsal

Photo by: James Holland

Marsal had the chance to sample the open-top machine at the Roar Before the 24 test, and quickly got the nod to join the team for the race effort. The move to LMPC is one that will see Marsal combine lessons learned behind the wheel of top LMP1 machines with Dyson Racing with the history that he has racing in GT Class equipment.

“The PC car is pretty straight forward and a lot of fun to drive,” said Marsal, who also has logged countless laps behind the wheel while helping to develop the open-top Caterham SP/300R machine. “Coming from the P1 car, the PC car has some similar capabilities and that helped me get comfortable quickly, although it is certainly different to be in an open-top car again!”

After making his first-ever Rolex GT Class start in 2011, Marsal scored two podium finishes in 2013, including a runner-up result at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in the penultimate round of the championship. From racing a prototype on a temporary street circuit to the cut and thrust of touring car racing, Marsal has quickly adapted to each new challenge as he has continued to make progress in the sport.

“I was glad to get the chance to drive the car at Daytona and work on getting comfortable with the team and the car,” said Marsal. “With more than 60 cars for the 24, the traffic is going to be something that you will have to deal with-- every single lap. The PC car will be interesting because we are close to the Prototypes and also some of the GT cars so we will have to be looking out front as well as behind.”

The Marsal+Kimber-Smith pairing will be a familiar one, as the two are also set to share the driving duties for Turner Motorsport in the full IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge season for Turner Motorsport as Marsal returns to the BMW M3 platform following a year behind the wheel of an Aston Martin. The Roar weekend saw Marsal “back home” with Turner Motorsport as he and Kimber-Smith put the BMW M3 machine through its paces in the three days of testing.

“It was great to get back into a Turner BMW, I think the M3 should be pretty strong at Daytona,” said Marsal. “I know that Continental (SportsCar Challenge) is going to be incredibly competitive once again and I’m looking forward to getting a good start to the year when we are back at the end of the month.”

The Rolex 24 At Daytona weekend will open with Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge practice on Wednesday, January 22.

Michael Marsal Racing

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About this article
Series TUSC
Article type Breaking news
Tags bmw, daytona, enzo pottolicchio, michael marsal, oreca, tom kimber-smith, tusc

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