Daytona 24: Orbit Racing Thursday report

take two Orbit Racing posted the third-fastest GT time during Thursday qualifying for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, but the time was disallowed, forcing the team to qualify again on Friday. Orbit was one of seven teams that missed a regulation that...

take two

Orbit Racing posted the third-fastest GT time during Thursday qualifying for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, but the time was disallowed, forcing the team to qualify again on Friday. Orbit was one of seven teams that missed a regulation that requires filing of qualifying paperwork two hours before the start of the session. Mike Fitzgerald will qualify again on Friday in the No. 44 Classic Industries Porsche 911 GT3 RS he shares with Joe and Jay Policastro, Robin Liddell and Johnny Mowlem.

"As it turns out, we were thrown out of that qualifying session for a non-technical violation," Fitzgerald said. "We have to requalify tomorrow and that means the best we can start is 31st overall, which is no big deal because it's a 24-hour race and we'll have plenty of time to move up. We showed today that we have a fast car and I think we'll do well."

driver power

Jay Policastro has a personal strategy for the Rolex 24.

"My actual driving time will be about five one-hour stints," he said. "Recovery from a one- hour stint will be short. You need plenty of fluids and you must eat; you need food to make power. I usually stick to Cytomax drink mix and carbohydrate gels and bars. I also eat yogurt and fruit, which is easy to digest. Also sleep - short power naps during the night make Sunday morning a whole lot easier. The other element is staying dry. I typically will go back to the motorhome and put on some dry clothes or a fresh driver suit. I will use four suits for a 24-hour race."

coaching benefit

Robin Liddell received a special reward for coaching a racing school at the Silverstone circuit in England - that's where he me his girlfriend, Louise Flitton. Louise was the only one of 20 students in the school who went on to race in a championship series. She said having a private coach has been a real benefit.

"I managed to get a bit of extra tuition, a few extra laps in," she recalled. "He had a way of making me understand what he was trying to get me to do. A lot of people who driver coach, when I say I'm not quick enough, say, 'Go faster'. That's the obvious answer, but what you need is someone who can tell you where you're losing that time and where you can find that time. He's been brilliant helping me to understand."

-or/sp-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Robin Liddell , Johnny Mowlem , Jay Policastro