DAYTONA BEACH, Florida - February 2, 2001 - The Toronto-based Bytzek Motorsports entry of Scott Maxwell, David Empringham, Richard Spenard and team owner Klaus Bytzek - with Maxwell at the helm - ousted the factory Corvette team from the pole in...
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida - February 2, 2001 - The Toronto-based Bytzek Motorsports entry of Scott Maxwell, David Empringham, Richard Spenard and team owner Klaus Bytzek - with Maxwell at the helm - ousted the factory Corvette team from the pole in the last minute of qualifying to capture the top spot in GTS for Saturdays Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona.
Maxwell, who popped the 119.946 mph lap right at the end of qualifying, said the car ran well all day, but a clean lap free of traffic made the difference.
"We suddenly found ourselves with lots of open pavement ahead, and clicked off a good lap without anyone getting in our way," said Maxwell, who was third behind the two factory Vettes after yesterday's first session.
Other top Porsche GTS qualifiers included the Porsche GT1 of Gunnar Jeannette/Paul Newman/Michael Brockman/Terry Jackson (sixth), the other Bytzek Porsche GT1 of Henry Bytzek/Larry Schumacher/John Brenner/James Holtom (eighth), and the Proton Competition Porsche Turbo of George Ried/Christian Ried/Horst Felbermayer/Horst Felbermayer, Jr. (tenth).
In the Sports Racer Prototype (overall) class, the Champion Lola/Porsche - also using a Porsche GT1-based powerplant - with drivers Dorsey Schroeder/Bob Wollek/Hurley Haywood/Sascha Maassen, qualified fourth overall after taking yesterday's first session o ff because of the rainy weather.
"The car is handling well," said Schroeder, who has the most testing time in the car over the past year, "but there was no reason to push any harder in qualifying. We are on the second row - thus avoiding the slower traffic initially, and we will drive th e first several hours to stay out of trouble. If everything goes well, this car has a shot to win the race."
In the GT class, teams with Porsche 911 GT3 Rs and GT3 RS' will have to overcome a Mosler/Chevy and a BMW M3 V8 - which hold the top two spots - in order to defend its GT title from last year. The Red Bull Porsche 911 GT3 R of Dieder Quester/Lica Riccite elli/Hans Jorge Hofer/Phillip Peter qualified third in class, while the Petersen Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 RS of Lucas Luhr/Randy Pobst/Mike Fitzgerald/Christian Manzel was fourth despite some power steering woes.
Last year's surprise winners - Gabrio Rosa, Fabio Rosa, Fabio Babini and Alex Caffi, driving this year in the Seikel Motorsport Porsche 911 GT3 RS - were fifth in class. In all, Porsche took seven of the top ten positions in class.
The G&W Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R of David Murry/Cort Wagner/Darren Law/Christian Menzel qualified seventh in class.
The race will be televised live - all 24 hours of it - on Speedvision starting at 12:30 PM Eastern time on Saturday, February 3. Speedvision pioneered flag-to-flag endurance coverage last year by televising both the 12 Hours of Sebring and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The official Porsche web site - www.porsche.com - will have Porsche race reports every three hours.. When you bring up the Porsche home page, click on "choose a country" and then "North America" to find motorsports news.