Daytona 24: Risi Competizione final practice

2002 Rolex 24 at Daytona Daytona International Speedway final qualifying and practice, Feb. 1 The No. 13 Risi Competizione Ferrari 333 SP is ready for the 40th annual Rolex 24 at Daytona, scheduled to start Saturday on the 3.65-mile ...

2002 Rolex 24 at Daytona
Daytona International Speedway
final qualifying and practice, Feb. 1

The No. 13 Risi Competizione Ferrari 333 SP is ready for the 40th annual Rolex 24 at Daytona, scheduled to start Saturday on the 3.65-mile Daytona International Speedway road course. The team missed the Friday morning sessions for a planned replacement of the engine and gearbox, then did final checks during the afternoon practice.

Eric van de Poele of Belgium will start the 24-hour race from sixth on the grid. He'll alternate driving stints with David Brabham of Australia and Stefan Johansson of Sweden.

"We checked everything and scrubbed some tires," reported van de Poele. "The engine, gearbox, all the team, driver changes, weather, everything is perfect. It's so hard to be at the end of the 24 hours, but this year looks pretty good. I love to be here this weekend! I just try to give all my best and try to motivate everybody so they can do the same."

Johansson also noted the challenge of finishing the Daytona race. "It's running really well, it's a comfortable race car now," he said. "We need to just get to the end without problems. That takes reliability, stay out of trouble, teamwork and pitwork, but reliability is the most important. It's always reliability here and it seems to be harder here than anywhere else for the cars to make it to the end."

Driver preparation

David Brabham says a driver's physical preparation is as important as car preparation.

"I don't have a set routine because I'm continually learning," he said. "I know I've got to be fit, I know I've got to sort out my mental side, as well. The two go together because the fitter you are, the more mentally tough you are. I try to prepare the mind as much as I prepare the body, and to me the mind is the key. The way you think is the way you feel.

"I'm always trying to get the maximum out of myself. When you're training hard, it enhances the mind as well, and you build a little bit more on top of that with the mind. When you come to a race track, you're absolutely clear of your direction. If you can prepare yourself mentally as well as physically, everyone around you feels it."

-sp-

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers David Brabham , Stefan Johansson , Eric van de Poele
Teams Risi Competizione