The Doran-Lista Team Hopes to Carry Momentum Of Rolex Victory on to Homestead, Sebring and Fontana LEBANON, Ohio, Feb. 22 - Snowfall is common in the wintry months of February and March in the Doran-Lista Racing team's hometown of Lebanon, Ohio,...
The Doran-Lista Team Hopes to Carry Momentum Of Rolex Victory on to Homestead, Sebring and Fontana
LEBANON, Ohio, Feb. 22 - Snowfall is common in the wintry months of February and March in the Doran-Lista Racing team's hometown of Lebanon, Ohio, but if everything goes well, the team will spend approximately 43 hours in actual flat-out racing competition during these two typically wintry months this year.
That's not 43 hours just devoted to being at a racetrack. That's 43 hours going as fast as the team's Doran-Lista Dallara Judd #27 can go during three races in Florida and one in California.
The team already has 24 hours of competition not only just "in the books," but also in the record books. After qualifying on the pole, the team, including drivers Mauro Baldi, Fredy Lienhard, Max Papis and Didier Theys, finished six laps ahead of its nearest competitor enroute to winning the prestigious Rolex 24 at Daytona Feb. 2-3.
Next Saturday afternoon, March 2, the team will be back in Florida for the Nextel 250, a three-hour event scheduled right after the Indy Racing League season opener at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The race will be televised live on Speed Channel.
On March 16 the team sets its sights on the golden anniversary edition of the Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, also in Florida. The enduro using the 3.7-mile airport course will be broadcast live on Speed Channel from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Then it's on to the brand-new road course at California Speedway March 23 for the Grand American 400, which carries a four-hour time limit. Qualifications are set for 4:15 p.m. on Friday, March 22 for this race, which will be covered live on Speed Channel.
But before all that the focus will be on Homestead-Miami Speedway. The Grand Am cars will compete on Homestead's 2.21-mile, 14-turn road course for 250 miles, 104 laps or three hours beginning around 3:30 p.m. Eastern on Saturday. Qualifying will be held the day before, Friday, at 2:30 p.m.
The Doran-Lista team won the pole and this race in 2000 and it finished third at Homestead last year. Theys and Baldi hold the fastest Sport Racing Prototype (SRP) race-lap record at Homestead, turning the infield course at an average speed of 120.902 mph enroute to victory on May 7, 2000. The team also holds the record for the fastest race average speed at 106.706 mph. That year the race didn't take three hours, either, as the Doran-Lista team turned 104 laps in only two hours and 20 minutes in 2000.
Theys and Baldi will again share the driving duties at Homestead next Saturday. They'll be joined by Fredy Lienhard Sr. at Sebring for that once-around-the-clock classic. Team owner Kevin Doran will put Theys in the car at Fontana, along with a mystery driver to be announced later.
"We hope to carry the momentum from our victory in the Rolex 24 on to Homestead, Sebring and Fontana," Doran noted.
The race at California Speedway, which is being called the Grand American 400, also shares the card with the Indy Racing series. That weekend the Grand Am event will be held on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. and the IRL headliner on Sunday. Grand-Am qualifying will be held at 4:15 p.m. on Friday, March 22. The Grand-Am race's distance is set at 400 miles, 142 laps or four hours.