Pumpelly tops GTD times in Daytona testing

Spencer Pumpelly and Flying Lizard Motorsports continue to get acclimated with their new Audi R8 LMS machines.

Pumpelly tops GTD times in Daytona testing

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Driving the No. 45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Audi R8 LMS, Spencer Pumpelly posted the fastest GTD lap time at Daytona International Speedway during the ‘Roar Before the 24,’ a three-day test to prepare for the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

#45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Audi R8 LMS: Nelson Canache, Spencer Pumpelly, Tim Pappas, Markus Winkelhock
#45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Audi R8 LMS: Nelson Canache, Spencer Pumpelly, Tim Pappas, Markus Winkelhock

Photo by: Trevor Horn

Recently announced as a full-season driver for Flying Lizard Motorsports’ 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Pumpelly and team continue to get acclimated with their new Audi R8 LMS machines. Off-season preparations came to fruition at Daytona International Speedway, as Pumpelly clicked off the quickest GTD lap on day one of a three-day test.

“I think we were up to speed a little quicker than everyone else was when the weather was good on Friday,” Pumpelly said. “If you look at the session on Sunday morning, we were the fastest there too, but not by as much as Friday. We had the quickest time, but there’s a lot of other cars that are knocking at the door for sure.”

In a stacked GTD field of Audis, Porsches, Ferraris, BMWs, Aston Martins and Vipers, where the top seven cars were separated by a mere 0.5-second, Pumpelly’s lap of 1:47.981 could not be matched. Co-drivers, Nelson Canache Jr. and Markus Winkelhock, were each able to top their respective track sessions as well, demonstrating that the No. 45 will be tough to beat in the Rolex 24.

“The car is new and the track isn’t one the Lizards run a lot, but they know how to do endurance races,” Pumpelly said. “They’ve done the Rolex 24 and Le Mans, so I think for the Lizards this is all familiar stuff.

“I’m really enjoying the Audi,” Pumpelly added. “It’s a lot different from the Porsche in many ways, but not so different that it wasn’t easy to get up to speed and feel comfortable in it. There are some nuances for sure. The way the gas pedal relates to how much throttle is given to the big torquey engine, for example. It doesn’t have the finite control that the smaller-engine 911 has, but it’s much easier in the brake zone—it turns in more aggressively. It’s a fun car to drive. It’s not super busy, it’s just fun.”

In addition to a new car, Pumpelly is getting accustomed to the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, which is a merger of the two series he raced in previously: the American Le Mans Series and the Rolex Sports Car Series. The unification has brought teams from each championship together for the first time, heightening the level of competition across all categories.

“It’s really odd,” Pumpelly said. “It’s been so divided for so long. The two never really mixed and now everyone is here together. It’s interesting to see what influences from each series are coming forward. It’s going to be good for the fans. I’m enjoying the new series so far and I love having everybody here.”

Spencer Pumpelly

shares
comments
Action Express Racing gets fast start to 2014 with quickest time in Roar testing

Previous article

Action Express Racing gets fast start to 2014 with quickest time in Roar testing

Next article

#NothingButTailLights as Starworks rule with fastest lap at the Roar

#NothingButTailLights as Starworks rule with fastest lap at the Roar
Load comments
The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence Prime

The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence

Following the latest convergence connection permitting Le Mans Hypercars from the FIA World Endurance Championship to compete against LMDh entries in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship from 2023, it could open up enticing options not only to manufacturers but also for the calendar and race formats

WEC
Jul 13, 2021
Why a Mazda IMSA Prototype title would bring bitter joy Prime

Why a Mazda IMSA Prototype title would bring bitter joy

Can Mazda win this year’s IMSA Prototype championship? Undoubtedly. But it will be the culmination of an achingly hard struggle, after which the brand has decided to quit. David Malsher-Lopez tells the story of a bizarre blend of heartache and positivity.

IMSA
Apr 6, 2021
The GTE dilemma that IMSA has created for the WEC Prime

The GTE dilemma that IMSA has created for the WEC

The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s decision to scrap its GT Le Mans class for 2022 raises the question of whether the FIA World Endurance Championship should phase out GTE cars. But it's a much harder decision than it appears on the surface.

WEC
Feb 3, 2021
Nine things to watch at the 2021 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona Prime

Nine things to watch at the 2021 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona

After a 100-minute sprint race to whet the appetite, the 2021 IMSA SportsCar Championship gets underway properly this weekend. With plenty of significant changes during the winter, here are the key points you need to keep an eye on

IMSA
Jan 29, 2021
Why Magnussen is relishing a fresh start in sportscars Prime

Why Magnussen is relishing a fresh start in sportscars

Having gone over seven years without a race win through spells with McLaren, Renault and Haas, Kevin Magnussen's departure from Formula 1 for IMSA with big-hitters Chip Ganassi Racing could give him what he craves most - a chance of success

IMSA
Jan 29, 2021
Oliver Gavin's Corvette Racing highlights Prime

Oliver Gavin's Corvette Racing highlights

Oliver Gavin has stepped down from the full-time Corvette Racing line-up after a stellar career with the team spanning nearly 20 years. He looks back on a stint that encompassed, among other successes, five Le Mans 24 Hours victories.

Le Mans
Jan 28, 2021
How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends Prime

How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends

Victory at last year's Spa 24 Hours meant Nick Tandy had completed the unofficial sextuple crown of the world's six biggest endurance races, becoming the first Briton to do so. Ahead of his fresh start with Corvette Racing, he explains how he did it…

Le Mans
Jan 24, 2021
The 12 greatest Sebring 12 Hours ranked Prime

The 12 greatest Sebring 12 Hours ranked

The 2020 edition of the Florida sportscar classic is finally taking place this weekend, eight months after its traditional date in March. That meant there was plenty of time for Motorsport.com to pour over its previous 67 races and select the best.

IMSA
Nov 11, 2020