Homestead: SAMAX preview

The SAMAX Motorsport crew made a fast change from international mode to hometown, returning from the Rolex Sports Car Series race in Mexico City to prepare for the next event at Homestead Motor Speedway in Homestead, Fla. The team is based 70...

The SAMAX Motorsport crew made a fast change from international mode to hometown, returning from the Rolex Sports Car Series race in Mexico City to prepare for the next event at Homestead Motor Speedway in Homestead, Fla. The team is based 70 miles north of the track in Pompano Beach, Fla., ensuring a quick commute for the March 25 race.

SAMAX will field two Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars in the two-hour 45-minute race. Rob Bell of Northampton, England, will return to the No. 17 SAMAX Porsche, driving with John Dalziel of Glasgow, Scotland. Dave Lacey and Greg Wilkins, both of Toronto, will continue in the No. 71 SAMAX/Doncaster Racing Porsche, hoping for another strong performance after finishing seventh in the GT class in Mexico City.

performance tradoff

SAMAX/Doncaster veterans Dave Lacey and Greg Wilkins have the skills and knowledge required to race on the 2.3-mile Homestead circuit, which combines a banked oval and an infield road course. Lacey explained the compromises inherent in the track design.

"Homestead is a unique 'roval' challenge in its combination of a technical infield and high-speed oval corners. High-speed oval stability and handling through the infield usually present contradictions in terms of suspension setup. Car setup is key at facilities like this, where tradeoffs between performance on and off the oval are pronounced," he explained. "We are looking forward to Homestead after our good result in Mexico."

preference or preparation?

Rob Bell and John Dalziel have completed a single race each in the Rolex Series, both strong debuts with SAMAX. Dalziel notched a GT podium finish with the team in 2004 and Bell posted a solid sixth-place class finish in Mexico City last month.

Bell previously raced at Homestead in 2003, in a Fran-Am open-wheel car. Does his previous success mean the track suits his driving style? He believes it's more a matter of preparation.

"I raced at Homestead in Fran-Am, qualified on pole and finished second, so it was quite good prep for me. It brings back good memories!" he recalled. "If you ask someone their favorite racing track, it's the one they've won at the most. It only suits you if you win there. If everything hooks up and the engineers get it right and the driver gets it right, then it all works. If we go there with a good attitude and work hard, then the track will suit me."

Dalziel warmed up for the Homestead Rolex Series race with another favorite sport -- snowboarding aerials. "I like going really fast," he said. "I like anything that's a bit crazy, challenging and exciting, not mundane."

-samax-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Rob Bell , Dave Lacey , Greg Wilkins , John Dalziel