Historic Day For Spirit of Daytona Racing Local Team Turns First Laps At Newly Paved Daytona International Speedway Daytona Beach, FL (December 17) -- It was a historic day today for Spirit of Daytona Racing. The Daytona Beach-based GRAND-AM...
Historic Day For Spirit of Daytona Racing
Local Team Turns First Laps At Newly Paved Daytona International Speedway
Daytona Beach, FL (December 17) -- It was a historic day today for Spirit of Daytona Racing. The Daytona Beach-based GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series team turned this morning the first laps for a Daytona Prototype at the newly paved Daytona International Speedway at a tire test for the series' new official tire supplier Continental Tire.
The three-hour test is a prelude to the prestigious Rolex 24 at Daytona, America's premier endurance race which will take place January 29-30, 2011 in Daytona Beach, Florida.
It is the first time the new Continental Tire has turned laps on the track's new surface.
Spirit of Daytona newcomer Paul Edwards piloted the No. 90 Chevrolet-powered Coyote chassis -- also his first laps in a DP at Daytona -- and was thrilled with both the smoother surface and tire.
"It feels special getting to do the first laps here in a DP. I was very pleased with the tire. It held up and it was getting quicker as the fuel burned off which is encouraging for everybody that's going to come out here," he said.
"It feels very smooth between (NASCAR turns) one and two and three and four, and we're going to be able to run the car lower which is nice. They really did a good job with the track and the tires seem to like it."
Officials went to repaving the famed superspeedway in July for just the second time ever and the first time since 1978 after the aging asphalt developed a pothole during the 2010 Daytona 500.
Edwards makes the move this season to DP from the Rolex GT Series where he won 14 races between 2005 and 2010 and claimed the series championship in 2008. He will join Antonio Garcia in the No. 90 as the Spirit of Daytona looks to take another step forward after eleven top 10 finishes and a return to the podium one year ago.
Team owner/manager Troy Flis was pleased with the Continental Tire, and also honored that the locally owned and operated team got to represent the Rolex Sports Car Series DP class at Daytona.
"We were happy to get to do it because it gives us a little bit of extra knowledge and also helps the series out in the process," said Flis. "It's cool. It's a good step for us. We're looking at this as our championship year and we want to run well everywhere. Anytime we can get on the racetrack we're going to do whatever we can to do it."
"We made a full run with the tire and I'm pretty happy with it. I think the tire wear is going to be sufficient. The performance of the tire was pretty impressive and we didn't really lose a lot of time."
Spirit of Daytona Racing will return to the track January 7-9 for the annual Roar Before The Rolex, the final test before the Rolex 24 at Daytona on January 29-30.
-source: spirit of daytona racing