Daytona testing report 98-01-11

FERRARIS FASTEST AT STAR-STUDDED ROLEX 24 TEST DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (January 11, 1998) -- Wrapping-up the third and final day of testing for the 1998 Rolex 24 At Daytona, Frenchman Yannick Dalmas and Italy's Max Papis posted unofficial...


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (January 11, 1998) -- Wrapping-up the third and final day of testing for the 1998 Rolex 24 At Daytona, Frenchman Yannick Dalmas and Italy's Max Papis posted unofficial speeds faster than the existing Rolex 24 Can-Am qualifying record at Daytona International Speedway. Dalmas, driving the No. 43 Royal Purple Ferrari 333 SP, turned a fastest speed of 128.664 mph (1:39.608) around the 3.56-mile road course/oval, while Papis, driving the No. 3 team car was a tick slower at 128.651 mph (1:39.618). Both drivers were below the official qualifying record of 127.578 mph (1:40.456) set in 1997 by Fermin Velez. "After the 1997 Rolex 24, everyone said that Ferrari was finished, but now we have four teams with fantastic drivers -- the best in 20 years," said Luigi Dindo, Chief Engineer for Michelotto, which is responsible for the Ferrari 333 SP race program. "The drivers throughout the field are the best in 20 years. It is a tribute to the race, the France family and the governing bodies, and we thank them for putting us in this position." Third-fastest on the weekend was the No. 17 Toshiba Copiers and Fax Ferrari 333 SP, who turned an unofficial speed of 127.418 mph (1:40.582). Taylor, of Altamonte Springs, Fla., was the race winner in 1996, and switches from the Riley & Scott chassis to the Ferrari for 1998. Leading the charge for the GT contingent was the No. 99 Vistion-Elan Natural Waters Panoz GTR with CART driver Scott Pruett, of Crystal Bay, Nev., at the helm. Pruett's unofficial speed of 123.076 mph (1:44.131) was nearly five mph faster than the 1997 mark of 118.154 mph (1:48.468) set by Olivier Baretta. Other cars to post times faster than the official mark were Great Britain's Andy Wallace, in the No. 5 Vistion-Elan Natural Waters Panoz GTR, with a speed of 122.423 mph (1:44.678); David Murry, in the No. 01 Rohr Corporation Porsche 911 GT1 with a speed of 120.212 mph (1:46.612) and Mike Borkowski, Tony Kanaan and Robbie Buhl in the No. 4 Dayton Ford Mustang Cobra with a speed of 118.818 mph (1:47.862). Franz Konrad, Larry Schumacher and Nick Ham and the No. 98 Porsche 911 GT2 led the GT2 class with a speed of 112.704 mph (1:53.714), followed by the No. 05 Prova Motorsports Porsche 911 GT2 of Katsunori Iketani, Masamitsu Ishihara and Harry Bytzek with a lap of 109.953 mph (1:57.399). The No. 55 AASCO Performance Porsche 911 RSR of Jorge Trejos, Tim Ralston and Tom Peterson ran a lap of 112.313 mph (1:54.110), unofficially eclipsing the GT3 lap record of 110.230 mph (1:56.265) set by Dorsey Schroeder in 1997. Following the Porsche was the No. 7 BMW M3 of Tom Popadopolis, R.J. Valentine and Peter Cunningham with a lap of 110.219 mph (1:56.278) and the No. 54 BMW M3 of Scott Neuman, Terry Borcheller, Bill Adam and Andy Pilgrim with a speed of 109.953 (1:56.559). World-class field of drivers was on hand for the three-day test, including Ferrari Canadian Ron Fellows and France's Bob Wollek; Formula One driver Vincenzo Sospiri; IRL drivers Raul Boesel and Arie Luyendyk; Craftsman Trucks driver Boris Said; NTB Trans-Am drivers Dorsey Schroeder and Mike Borkowski; 1997 Rolex winners Butch Leitzinger, Elliott Forbes-Robinson and James Weaver; and a host of other stars, including Lyn St. James, Danny Sullivan, Paul Newman and Jason Priestley. The 36th Rolex 24 At Daytona begins Saturday, January 31 at 1:00 p.m. (ET).

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Top-five unofficial times for Can-Am, GT1, GT2 and GT3 from the January 9-11 Rolex 24 At Daytona Test Days with position, car number in parenthesis, drivers, car, fastest time and speed in miles-per-hour. Can-Am: 1, (43), Max Papis, Yannick Dalmas, Bob Wolleck, Ron Fellows, Ferrari 333 SP, 1:39.608, 128.664. 2, (3), Max Papis, Yannick Dalmas, Bob Wolleck, Ron Fellows, Ferrari 333 SP, 1:39.618, 128.651. 3, (17), Wayne Taylor, Eric van de Poele, Fermin Velez, Ferrari 333 SP, 1:40.582, 127.418. 4, (30), Gianpiero Moretti, Mauro Baldi, Didier Theys, Arie Luyendyk, Ferrari 333 SP, 1:40.588, 127.411. 5. (8), Scott Schubot, Johnny O'Connell, Henry Camferdam, Ford Riley & Scott, 1:42.335, 125.236.

GT1: 1, (99), Scott Pruett, David Brabham, Eric Bernard, Jamie Davis, Andy Wallace, Paul Newman, Panoz GTR, 1:44.131, 123.076. 2, (5), Andy Wallace, Scott Pruett, Raul Boesel, Paul Newman, Doc Bundy, Panoz GTR, 1:44.678, 122.423. 3, (01), David Murry, Allan McNish, Danny Sullivan, Vincenso Sospiri, Dirk Muller, Porsche 911 GT1, 1:46.612, 120.212. 4, (4), Mike Borkowski, Tony Kanaan, Robbie Buhl, Ford Mustang Cobra, 1:47.862, 118.818. 5, (74), George Robinson, Jack Baldwin, Jon Goding, Irv Hoerr, Oldsmobile Aurora, 1:49.042, 117.533. GT2: 1, (98), Franz Konrad, Larry Schumacher, Nick Ham, Porsche 911 GT2, 1:53.714, 112.704. 2, (05), Katsunori Iketani, Masamitsu Ishihara, Harry Bytzek, Porsche 911 GT2, 1:57.399, 109.166. 3, (50), Thomas McGlynn, James Oppenheimer, George Balbach, J. Robert Johnson, Erik Johnson, Porsche 911, 2:04.911, 102.601. GT3: 1, (55), Jorge Trejos, Tim Ralston, Tom Peterson, Porsche 911 RSR, 1:54.110, 112.313. 2, (7), Tom Popadopolis, Peter Cunningham, R.J. Valentine, BMW M3, 1:56.278, 110.219. 3, (54), Scott Neuman, Terry Borcheller, Bill Adam, Andy Pilgrim, BMW M3, 1:56.559, 109.953. 4, (6), Boris Said, Mark Simo, Bill Auberlen, BMW M3, 1:56.702, 109.818. 5, (41), Chris Cervelli, Cort Wagner, Kelly Collins, Marc Besseng, Porsche 911 RSR, 1:57.990, 108.619.

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Series Can-Am , GT
Drivers Andy Wallace , David Brabham , Franz Konrad , Allan McNish , Butch Leitzinger , James Weaver , Boris Said , Didier Theys , Yannick Dalmas , Robbie Buhl , Arie Luyendyk , Raul Boesel , Max Papis , Tony Kanaan , Ron Fellows , Johnny O'Connell , Scott Pruett , Andy Pilgrim , Wayne Taylor , Eric van de Poele , David Murry , Bill Auberlen , Mauro Baldi , Kelly Collins , Danny Sullivan , Jack Baldwin , Terry Borcheller , Paul Newman , George Robinson , Dorsey Schroeder , Peter Cunningham , Jason Priestley , Mike Borkowski , James Oppenheimer , R.J. Valentine , Fermin Velez , Henry Camferdam , Nick Ham , Bob Wollek , Doc Bundy , Katsunori Iketani , Gianpiero Moretti , Vincenzo Sospiri , Jorge Trejos , George Balbach , Cort Wagner , Bill Adam