No. 14 Lexus and No. 46 Lamborghini. Photo courtesy of IMSA

Here’s the 2017 Rolex 24 at Daytona entry list, so far

Leave a comment

Because there’s been an avalanche of announcements ahead of next year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona, which is barely more than a month away, you might have lost track of who’s all driving where and what driver lineups are set.

Luckily, we’re keeping track on our end.

Here’s what we know, via a mix of team releases and news reports. Lineups that have yet to be formally confirmed, but have participated in Daytona testing, have an asterisk by them.

PROTOTYPE (13-14 expected)

Most of the Prototype field is already set. Mazda is due to announce their full lineups before the end of the year and it’d be a surprise if it didn’t feature some familiar faces as the extra drivers.

PR1/Mathiasen and JDC/Miller, which step up from PC, also are due formal reveals of their lineups, expected to feature similar names. Starworks’ Peter Baron has a habit of pulling some incredible lineups out for the Rolex 24 and he would figure to do so with at least one of his entries in 2017.

Full season

2, Tequila Patron ESM, Ligier JS P217 Nissan, Dalziel/Sharp/Derani
22, Tequila Patron ESM, Ligier JS P217 Nissan, E. Brown/van Overbeek/B. Senna/Hartley
5, Action Express Racing, Cadillac DPi-V.R, Barbosa/Fittipaldi/Albuquerque
31, Action Express Racing, Cadillac DPi-V.R, Cameron/Curran/S. Morris/Conway
10, Wayne Taylor Racing, Cadillac DPi-V.R, J. Taylor/R. Taylor/Angelelli/J. Gordon
55, Mazda Motorsports, Mazda MRT24-P, Bomarito/Nunez (extra driver to be announced)
70, Mazda Motorsports, Mazda MRT24-P, T. Long/J. Miller (extra driver to be announced)
52, PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports, Ligier JS P217 Gibson, Kimber-Smith/Gutierrez/Guasch*
85, JDC/Miller Motorsports, Oreca 07 Gibson, TBA
90, VISIT FLORIDA Racing, Riley Mk. 30 Gibson, van der Zande/Goossens (extra driver to be announced)
TBA (7, 8 or 88 expected), Starworks Motorsport, Riley Mk. 30 Gibson, TBA

Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup/Daytona only

TBA (21 or 81 expected), DragonSpeed, Oreca 07 Gibson, Lapierre/Hanley/Hedman/Duval
TBA (12 or 13 expected), Rebellion Racing, Oreca 07 Gibson, Heidfeld/Buemi/Jani/Sarrazin

GT LE MANS (10-13 expected) 

Corvette, BMW and Porsche have formally revealed all their full lineups. Ford’s is expected in the next couple weeks. Risi is traditionally the latest of the bunch, and often revolves around what Ferrari factory drivers are available.

Per Sportscar365, Ford is planning a four-car run at Daytona for its GTLM program. Proton Competition has reportedly planned a one-car outing for Daytona and Scuderia Corsa ran a Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup GTLM program last year with a 488 GTE.

Full season

3, Corvette Racing, Corvette C7.R, Magnussen/Garcia/Rockenfeller
4, Corvette Racing, Corvette C7.R, Gavin/Milner/Fassler
19, BMW Team RLL, BMW M6 GTLM, Auberlen/Sims/Farfus/Spengler
25, BMW Team RLL, BMW M6 GTLM, Edwards/Tomczyk/Wittmer/Catsburg
62, Risi Competizione, Ferrari 488 GTE, Vilander*
66, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, Ford GT, Hand/D. Mueller*
67, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, Ford GT, Briscoe/Westbrook/Dixon*
911, Porsche GT Team, Porsche 911 RSR, Pilet/D. Werner/Makowiecki
912, Porsche GT Team, Porsche 911 RSR, Vanthoor/Estre/Lietz

Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup/Daytona only

TBA, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, Ford GT, TBA
TBA, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, Ford GT, TBA
TBA, Proton Competition, Porsche 911 RSR, Ried

GT DAYTONA (Widest range: 22-30-plus possible) 

Of the teams that have announced a full-season program for 2017, Stevenson, TRG and Turner Motorsport haven’t put out their full-season lineups. It’d be a surprise if Stevenson shifts from its 2016 lineup. At least eight extra entries will join the fun at Daytona, likely with more to follow.

Full season

6, Stevenson Motorsports, Audi R8 LMS, Liddell/A. Davis*
9, Stevenson Motorsports, Audi R8 LMS, Aschenbach/M. Bell (U.S.)*
14, 3GT Racing, Lexus RC F GT3, Karam/Pruett/I. James/Menezes
15, 3GT Racing, Lexus RC F GT3, Hawksworth/Alon/Cindric/D. Farnbacher
27, Dream Racing, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Sbirrazzuoli/DeGeorge/Ruberti/Giammaria*
48, Paul Miller Racing, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Sellers/Mad. Snow/B. Miller/Caldarelli
33, Riley-Team AMG, Mercedes-AMG GT3, Keating/J. Bleekemolen (extra drivers to be announced)
50, Riley-WeatherTech Racing, Mercedes-AMG GT3, Jeannette/MacNeil/van Gisbergen (extra driver to be announced)
75, SunEnergy1 Racing, Mercedes-AMG GT3, Vautier/Habul/Said (extra driver to be announced)
54, CORE autosport, Porsche 911 GT3 R, Braun/Bennett (extra drivers to be announced)
73, Park Place Motorsports, Porsche 911 GT3 R, J. Bergmeister/Lindsey/McMurry
TBA, TRG, Porsche 911 GT3 R, TBA
63, Scuderia Corsa, Ferrari 488 GT3, Balzan/Nielsen/Cressoni (extra driver to be announced)
86, Michael Shank Racing, Acura NSX GT3, Segal/Negri/Dyer/Hunter-Reay
93, Michael Shank Racing, Acura NSX GT3, Lally/Legge/Wilkins/Rahal
96, Turner Motorsport, BMW M6 GT3, TBA
97, Turner Motorsport, BMW M6 GT3, TBA

Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup/Daytona only

11, GRT Grasser Racing Team, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Engelhart/Ineichen/Bortolotti/E. Companc
TBA, GRT Grasser Racing Team, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Engelhart/Ineichen (extra drivers to be announced)
21, Konrad Motorsport, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Basseng/Mapelli/Willsey (extra driver to be announced; Trebing has tested)
28, Alegra Motorsports, Porsche 911 GT3 R, Morad/Lazare/M. de Quesada (extra driver to be announced)
29, Montaplast by Land-Motorsport, Audi R8 LMS, De Phillippi/Mies/Gounon/Schmidt
46, Ebimotors, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Babini/E. Busnelli (extra drivers to be announced)
59, Manthey Racing, Porsche 911 GT3 R, Reimer/Renger/Proczyk/S. Smith* (testing only thus far)
98, Aston Martin Racing, Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3, Dalla Lana/Lamy/Lauda (extra driver to be announced)

PROTOTYPE CHALLENGE (5-7 expected)

No PC team has yet announced a driver for next year other than Performance Tech Motorsports running James French in its No. 38 Oreca FLM09. Despite CORE’s absence and PR1/Mathiasen and JDC/Miller both stepping up to Prototype, PC should field anywhere from five to seven cars at Daytona between Starworks Motorsport, JDC/Miller, Performance Tech and BAR1 Motorsports.

ADDITIONAL TEAMS OF NOTE

There are still several teams that raced in 2016 are yet to reveal their full 2017 intentions and scale of program. Some may turn up at Daytona and others may have turned their final wheel in IMSA for the time being.

Of note, the GTD programs of Magnus Racing, Alex Job Racing (and Team Seattle), Black Swan Racing, Change Racing and Lone Star Racing are a festival of TBD.

The above list is always subject to change, and only figures to expand from what’s already listed.

What Drivers Said after the finish of the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama

IndyCar
Leave a comment

Here’s What Drivers Said after the rain-delayed conclusion of the INDYCAR Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park:

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 1 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet) – WINNER: “That was more eventful than I would have liked. But everybody did a great job. How about Team Chevy today – they gave us a great engine, good fuel mileage and good reliability, and that’s what we needed to win this race. It’s great having Hitachi – we got Verizon a victory, now we got Hitachi a victory, so thank you guys. Everyone at Team Penske did a great job, but like I said, that was more eventful than I wanted it. It would seem like smooth sailing for the most part, we didn’t have any yellows, which we were hoping no yellows today, but then the rain crept in. I couldn’t believe how long everyone stayed out. It was really risky what they were doing, but I understand why there were doing it. I’m glad we made the call to come in so soon.”

RYAN HUNTER (No. 28 DHL Honda) – finished 2nd: “It was a good race, it was tough getting the fuel number and trying to keep the pace up, but it was a lot of fun when it started raining, trying to find the grip again and searching around. I was almost worried that I was going to burn the front (tires) off. We came in early for the wet (tires). I stayed out there as long as I could, but on the slicks, I was a lot quicker and it was that inconsistent snap that you have. When you have one of those (snaps) with the slicks you can absolutely lose it completely, so we thought that was the best time to come in and grab the Firestone wets. It was good from there. I just needed a little bit more time to cut in on (Josef) Newgarden’s lead. Congratulations to Team Penske and (Josef) Newgarden. Great job by the DHL guys this weekend. We rolled off the truck, we weren’t that happy with the car and we kept working on it methodically, chipping into it and everybody just executed it – so a good weekend overall.”

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 5 Arrow Electronics SPM Honda) – finished 3rd: “I feel bad for the fans as much as anything. We were driving around out there, and it’s like, ‘Right guys its getting wetter, it’s getting wetter….’ ‘Wet enough for rains?’ ‘Nah, not wet enough for rains…’ ‘Wet enough for rains?’ ‘Nah…’ ‘Pit for rains.’ ‘Are you guys sure?’ It was the right call for sure, so big props to the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports guys; solid weekend for us in the end. As I said before, not a great test here, but two cars in the top 10 after qualifying and then two cars in the top five in the race, so pretty proud of these boys and everyone on the Arrow Electronics car. It’s good to get a couple of Hondas up there, maybe not on the top step of the podium, but we took the rest of it.”

ROBERT WICKENS (No. 6 Lucas Oil SPM Honda) – finished 4th: “I was having to save a lot of fuel in that second stint, so once (Scott) Dixon started getting close to me, I was thinking I might have to give this position up. Then the rain came, so the fuel mileage kind of happened naturally. The rain saved us a bit, but overall great job by the Lucas Oil guys. I was a little gutted that we came out into a big bunch of traffic, but it made the race fun. It was also a little bit frustrating as we lost a bit of track position there, and I think we could have both been fighting for higher steps on the podium today.”

SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS (No. 18 Team SealMaster Honda) – finished 5th: “It was just a tough day for the SealMaster Honda No. 18 team. It was looking perfect. We executed the plan to perfection. I started on scuffed Firestone red (alternate) tires, so we had a lot of tire degradation, but were still able to save more fuel than almost everyone. Josef (Newgarden) went for the push and it looked like we were still going to beat him because he pitted the second time and we got ahead. I had enough fuel to finish, but unfortunately, Mother Nature decided to open the skies and there wasn’t anything we could do about that. We tried to stay out and it bit us. On top of that, when we put on the wet tires, I don’t know what happened but the car was diabolical. I couldn’t do anything. I barely kept Scott (Dixon) behind me. I gave it my best shot, the guys did a good job, but it wasn’t enough. Everyone is executing perfectly. Unfortunately, you can’t predict what the weather is going to do, so you have to make a call one way or the other and we were on the wrong side of the fence today. The good news is we finished fifth and keep putting ourselves in position. Our pace is good and we are in the championship mix.”

SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) – finished 6th: “I think I was one of the drivers on the fence in regards to if we should restart or not yesterday. I guess overall, it was the same for everyone. I literally couldn’t see a thing from the PNC Bank car and was just trying to hold it straight. Cars were just going by me, and there was nothing you could do because I couldn’t see anything out of my visor. It’s a shame we couldn’t get in the full distance Sunday because Barber is an amazing track with an incredible crowd. I think the one-stop strategy was the one to have today and it would have put us third, but the rain took care of that, unfortunately. The car was fast and really good on fuel mileage, but it is what it is. Hopefully we can get a break to go our way in a few weeks.”

GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 15 Mi-Jack Honda) – finished 7th: “In the dry, we were able to make some moves and get by some guys, and turn in some good laps when we needed to before the pit stops and cycle out to a pretty good spot. Overall, it was a decent day. I can’t say too much bad about it. I’ll take seventh. We lost some ground to a few of the guys ahead, but overall it’s good to be third in points.”

TAKUMA SATO (No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Honda) – finished 8th: “We tried a one-stop strategy, and basically everyone else was on two-stoppers, so we looked like we lacked pace, but we had to save a massive amount of fuel. It looked good until the middle. My teammate came on charge and was on a hard two-stopper, so I let him go and lost some positions a couple of times, but then it looked good. If the yellow came, we would have been in a very positive position. Even not, a lot of people had to come into the pits. However, unfortunately the rain came and I had to stop again for rain tires, which meant my second stint was basically just a slow pace. It’s a big shame. The rain helped me a lot yesterday to get to eighth and today, in the end, the rain didn’t help my strategy. I will take it after a difficult qualifying.  We need to make the car fast at the (INDYCAR) Grand Prix because we have a lot of work to be done.”

SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet) – finished 9th: “We had a pretty good race going and I think we potentially could have been a top five (finisher). So, I was very frustrated with Gabby (Chavez). He was two laps down. And I just got stuck behind him, which gave an opportunity to (Scott) Dixon as I was trying everything I could to make it happen. But, it’s a real shame because when it’s not your day, it’s just not your day. You’ll have better days later, but you won’t have everybody on your side when you have a good day. And at the moment, he doesn’t have me on his side, let me tell you. But, it’s a real shame. I think the Menards No. 22 was really from where we started. The strategy to go on rain (tires) when we went on rain was a good choice and I thought it was a really good pace. We just started from too far back.”

MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 98 Kerauno / Curb Honda) – finished 10th: “It was a lot of fun out there, but I think finishing 10th is the worst we should’ve finished. I think myself and the guys earned a third-place finish. We beat (James Hinchcliffe) out in the end – so we had third locked up until the rain made all the one-stoppers work. We were looking really good for a podium; the Kerauno team was way better than what the race results showed, but we know we have the pace, so we’ll keep digging and move on to Indy.”

ALEXANDER ROSSI (No. 27 Kerauno / MilitaryToMotorsports.com Honda) – finished 11th: “It definitely wasn’t our best day. We initially went into the race with the plan of doing a two-stopper, then we switched to a one-stop strategy once the race started because of the extra formation laps. Once the race got going, we were on the wrong tire for the one-stop plan, and couldn’t make the fuel work, so we switched back to a two-stop strategy. It was looking OK, but we tried to survive the rain probably one lap too long and we lost time to guys that had already switched to rain tires. We ended up 11th. It wasn’t a great day from a performance or strategy standpoint. It’s a day that we’ll certainly be putting behind us as soon as possible and look forward to (the INDYCAR Grand Prix) where we had a really strong test a couple weeks ago.”

MATHEUS “MATT” LEIST (No. 4 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet) – finished 12th: “We made some great progress from where we started the weekend, so I’m pretty happy with that. The car was good with the reds (Firestone alternate tires) in the race, so I think we had good pace. We were running with (Simon) Pagenaud, and when (Scott) Dixon came in front of me he was not that much faster, which means we made some progress from practice. Unfortunately in the rain, the car wasn’t as good, we were struggling with understeer, so I couldn’t push as I wanted. If we look at where we started and where we finished, it was a good weekend. I’m happy for the ABC Supply team and myself. Onto Indianapolis.”

ZACH VEACH (No. 26 Group One Thousand One Honda) – finished 13th: “The weekend overall was good for us, confidence-wise – advancing to the top 12 in qualifying and getting up to position sixth yesterday for the first part of the race. Today, I think we definitely had the pace to finish inside the top 10, but we had a few mechanical issues during the race. I lost all of my adjustments inside of the car, so once that happened I was a sitting duck. Extremely thankful for my Group One Thousand One crew for the job they did this weekend. We held on the best we could to come home 13th. Hopefully we can improve for the (INDYCAR Grand Prix) and of course build on everything in time for the Indianapolis 500.”

JORDAN KING (No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet) – finished 14th: “I had a really good restart. I did exactly what I wanted to do, I wanted to dispatch a couple of cars quite quickly. I managed to get past both Ed (Jones) and Scott (Dixon) before Turn 2, so that was really good actually. That gave me good track position, we were then in the top five. Unfortunately, the rain yesterday may have caused an electrical problem that took quite a while to clear. Once we got going, it was then alright. Our strategy was then compromised with the rain and we were caught out. Overall slightly annoying, we really would have been fine for a top-five finish quite comfortably, I think.”

SPENCER PIGOT (No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet) – finished 15th: “It was definitely a difficult race out there. We thought we were making up some ground by pitting early and running hard, which seemed to be working a bit. We tried to gamble at the end to stay on slicks. We were hoping for a yellow that the race would end under and we could stay up where we were. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen and I just tried to keep it on the road the best I could. Eventually, it just got too wet and we had to come in at the end. There are some positives to take away from this weekend, we’re going to take those into the INDYCAR Grand Prix and hopefully be back up front.”

RENE BINDER – finished 16th: No comments

GABBY CHAVES (No. 88 Harding Group Chevrolet) – finished 17th: “Today’s conditions were not ideal for us to start. Our strategy we used yesterday to hope for a yellow to get our lap back obviously never came. We just did more to learn, try to gauge our pace and try to keep improving. I thought we really improved on our pace compared to everyone else and we did well to pick up a few positions at the end of the day and brought the car home. Now we get to work on our most important month of the year.”

TONY KANAAN (No. 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet) – finished 18th: “We had a very difficult weekend and I’m glad it’s over. Looking forward to Indianapolis.”

ZACHARY CLAMAN DE MELO (No. 19 Paysafe Honda) – finished 19th: “Yesterday was tough with all the rain, and I think it was a good call to postpone the race to today. With the two-lap penalty that we received yesterday, we knew we were already at a disadvantage. So, the main goal today was to show my race craft aboard the No. 19 Paysafe car, show that my pace was there and to show that if we would have been on the lead lap that we could have definitely fought for a top 10 position. I think we did that with how I was able to pass other cars on a track that is known to be difficult for passing. We had good pace, and the fastest race lap, so it was a positive weekend overall even if it didn’t go our way.”

ED JONES (No. 10 NTT DATA Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) – finished 20th: “Yesterday at the start, I was trying to attack, but it was very difficult. I just couldn’t see anything. Especially on the restarts. Maybe I could have been more aggressive or kept my foot down, but I didn’t think it was worth the risk in the NTT DATA car. Conditions were just very, very tough. You couldn’t see a thing. Today we got restarted and we were making progress, but we had mechanical issues and had to pit way before it was over. The guys will have to take a look at the car to see what happened I think. Hopefully we can move on and have a good start to the month of May in Indy.”

WILL POWER – finished 21st: No comments

MAX CHILTON (No. 59 Gallagher Chevrolet) – finished 22nd: “That was a really unfortunate way for us to end the weekend. We were happy with the qualifying effort of the No. 59 Gallagher Chevrolet and felt like we were making progress, but after the race was red-flagged and everyone was allowed to start on full fuel, we knew we were going to have a hard time doing much strategy-wise to move toward the front. Unfortunately for us, we didn’t get a chance to see what we could do during the remainder of the race because of an electrical issue that had us stopped on track before the field went green. The boys had it fixed and back out on track, but once we had confirmed the issue was fixed out on track and the heavy rain picked back up again, there was no point in us continuing and possibly tearing anything up.”

CHARLIE KIMBALL (No. 23 Tresiba Chevrolet – quote given Saturday) – finished 23rd: “The No. 10 car of Ed Jones just drove into the back of me. The stewards reviewed it and decided that no action would be taken, which I vehemently disagree with. Yeah, visibility was tough out there, but it was tough for everyone. I didn’t run into anyone and no one else ran into me, except for the No. 10 car. I don’t know what the stewards were looking at, but I’m going to have a discussion with them after the race. I’m just disappointed because the Carlin guys know how to run in the wet and they gave me a great car. We were moving up the field a few spots, and with the Marco (Andretti) spin, we were able to elevate another spot. We were just knocking on the door of making it into the top 10 and coming out of here in these conditions with a top-10 result heading into May would’ve been really good for the team.”

Follow @JerryBonkowski