Rolex 24 at Daytona Underway... Ferraris Showing Strong Daytona Beach, Florida... "Mad Max" Papis is in his element at Daytona. His many fans gather around him, wanting to pose for pictures with their favorite driver. He pauses as he walks ...
Rolex 24 at Daytona Underway...
Ferraris Showing Strong
Daytona Beach, Florida...
"Mad Max" Papis is in his element at Daytona. His many fans gather around him, wanting to pose for pictures with their favorite driver. He pauses as he walks through the Daytona Paddock area to sign autographs and shake hands with the people. Many of these fans were first introduced to "Mad Max" in 1996, others met him since as his career took him into CART in the years that followed.
Papis is proud to wear Ferrari colors and his own Italian flag. "Mad Max" is glad to be back racing at the famous Daytona International Speedway, the place he was first introduced to sports car racing in the U.S.
In the 41st annual running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona, Papis is driving the JMB Racing USA Team Ferrari 360 Modena. So far, the team is off to a good start. Although the No. 20 Ferrari started from the 31st position on the grid, in less than five hours and with all the drama that goes along with the first few hours of an endurance race, they had advanced to the Top Ten.
"The car is quite good," said a smiling "Mad Max". "We improved a couple of seconds as the night set in. We know we cannot beat all the cars in front of us with speed, but we feel the Ferrari is very consistent and we can be better with pit stops and go longer on fuel. Our paddle shift gearbox is also very reliable. These are things that help us with this race."
At 9:30 p.m. EST, the No. 20 JMB Ferrari was in fifth position overall and third in the GT class, just five laps down from the leader. The fastest lap for the car to date is a 1:55.476, turned by Emmanuel Collard. The car was one of the quickest advancing cars of the race, moving up with lightning speed from 31st position, now to fifth.
"Mad Max" is due for his next stint before 10:00 p.m., as the drivers are now rotating after double shifts. More will be reported as the race progresses.