Four days of testing in Sebring and Daytona, and drivers, engineers, crew men and car owners gained lots of data on the new cars, new regulations and generally the new feel, but there is a lot left to do.
Between the aero characteristics of the incredibly modified Daytona Prototypes, two of which took flight after tire issues, to the simple regulation of whether or not a GT-D car will be running with windows in or out, there is more testing to be had before cars hit the pavement under competition.
Dion Von Moltke, driver of the Flying Lizard Audi R8 said those four days are valuable in any series.
“Flying Lizard Motorsports is an amazing team, and for how good those cars were when we unloaded right away, shows how good they really are.”
With it being the first time the Flying Lizard team has fielded Audi R8s, von Moltke said they spent much of the time “throwing the kitchen sink at it,” to see how it reacts to changes.
Working again this season with Seth Nieman, von Moltke says it is beneficial, as they have worked together a lot in the past.
“We have some experience working together and learning a car together. I know how Seth likes to work, he knows how I like to work, and the engineers know. We all know each other we have had a year to work together,” he said.
“We want to use all that experience and get the most out of it that we can.”
A comical aspect of the terrifying wrecks suffered by two of the Daytona Prototypes was that many of the teams in the garage area didn’t even know it occurred, with so much to do as it is.
“None of us actually knew what had happened because we were working on the cars when it happened. I got back to the hotel after dinner, and saw it on Twitter and Instagram. We are happy that everyone is ok,” said von Moltke.
Von Moltke added that with the recent incidents, it puts a lot of pressure on the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship officials, but he said he has faith in the process.
“There is still a lot of work to do. They have a big job in front of them, and they admit that. I don’t envy their job. The biggest thing is letting the teams know what the rules are going to be,” von Moltke said.
“There are just too many unknowns right now, and that is why there were not a ton of cars at the test. Get those rules out, and we can give them feedback. Everyone can be working together. It will be difficult next year, and we all respect that. But they are going to get it right, make this thing work and create some incredible racing.”
In his own classes, it seems that GT-LM and GT-D are incredibly close in performance, and rumors have been circulating that they are looking at changing some rules to address that, however von Moltke has his own hopes for the change.
“I hope they speed cars up, not slow cars down,” he said.