NO OFF SEASON Courtney Takes on New Challenges Milwaukee, Wisc. (November 14, 2008) -- Jeff Courtney is using the downtime from SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge to hone his skills behind the wheel in a few unique ways through the Baja 1000...
NO OFF SEASON
Courtney Takes on New Challenges
Milwaukee, Wisc. (November 14, 2008) -- Jeff Courtney is using the downtime from SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge to hone his skills behind the wheel in a few unique ways through the Baja 1000 and then just over a week later Courtney races in the 25 Hours of Thunderhill. First up, Courtney will tackle the Baja 1000, an endurance race that cuts through the Mexican Baja peninsula.
The race is a test of perseverance and will stretch drivers mentally, emotionally and physically. Car and driver are battling the elements of the rugged desert terrain throughout the day and night as they race towards the finish. Drivers cover the distance in anywhere from 18 hours to 36 hours.
"For a regular road race, I'm a little more low-key, it is something I'm used to. But these races, these endurance challenges, it's something I'm really pumped for. Every day that goes by my adrenaline rises," said Courtney. "This is unlike anything I've ever done before."
"I'm also happy to be able to team-up with, and race against, some old friends from road racing," said Courtney. Several drivers on Courtney's team, as well as other teams scheduled for the Baja 1000, have raced with Courtney in the Panoz and Grand-Am series.
Courtney will race with a team of five other drivers, Barry Ellis, Frazier Wellon, Frank Rossi, Marcelo Abello and Toto Lassally. The team is uniquely international, with drivers from Wisconsin, Canada, Florida, Argentina and El Salvador.
The car, BC#4, a wide-open buggy, will be a new driving experience for the team.
This will be the first Baja 1000 race for the entire team who will be racing in the Baja Challenge Class. They will join the ranks of other famous Baja drivers such as Paul Newman, Sebastien Bourdais, Ivan Stewart, Michele Jourdain, Robby Gordon, Steve McQueen, Patrick Dempsey, Travis Pastrana, Rick Mears, Mickey Thompson and Parnelli Jones.
Jeff Courtney in the No. 99 Woodhouse Viper
After the Baja 1000, Courtney will round out the 2008 racing season by competing in the longest road racing event in the United States, NASA's 25 Hours of Thunderhill. Located in the northern California town of Willows, the 25 Hours of Thunderhill pits a mix of professional and amateur racers against each other from 11 a.m. Saturday, December 6th through 12 p.m. Sunday, December 7th.
"I was honored to have Marshall (Pruett) ask me to be a part of his team. Although I have never been to this track, nor have I ever raced a front-wheel drive car, Marshall assured me that 25 hours should give me plenty of time to learn," jokes Courtney. "I look forward to meeting and partnering with the other guys on the team."
The 3.0 mile, 15 turn Thunderhill Raceway track hosts more than 60 cars for the endurance race, with classes ranging from Spec Miata, Super Unlimited, and pro racing cars from series like SCCA World Challenge TC & GT, GrandAm Daytona Prototypes, Koni Challenge, and ALMS GT2.
Courtney joins the Team MPME/Scion Modified Magazine effort for the 25 Hours of Thunderhill in a turbocharged Scion TC, sharing driving duties with an all-star lineup of sportscar pilots. Courtney is one of three World Challenge drivers in the Scion, partnering with Subaru SPEED GT driver Gary Sheehan, and Lexus SPEED TC pilot Andrew Wojteczko.
Courtney is also joined by ALMS LMP2 winner Dave McEntee, and Dave Pratte, Canadian Touring Car Champion and Senior Editor of Modified Magazine. Sheehan and Pratte teamed up to drive the Team MPME/Scion TC in the 2007 25 Hours of Thunderhill race.
Modified Magazine will once again provide coverage of the team and event in an early 2009 issue of the magazine, and event blogs, photos, and videos will be posted on SPEEDtv.com.