The DeltaWing Racing Cars team set its quickest lap to date on the high banks of Daytona during today’s qualifying session, earning the eighth starting position for this weekend’s Rolex 24 Hours – race one of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
Katherine Legge put the revolutionary sports car prototype on the starting grid just behind the Daytona Prototypes, but ahead of the DeltaWing’s former American Le Mans Series P2 competitors with a quick time of 1:39.270. For Legge, as well as fellow DeltaWing drivers Andy Meyrick, Alexander Rossi and Gabby Chaves, it’s a chance to show the racing world what the car can do.
“We’ve made a lot of changes to the car since the Roar but now it feels like the car we had then, which was really quick. The car was very well set up and we were able to show what we’re capable of. I think we have an advantage on some of the other cars, because of how quickly our tires and brakes come up to temperature – it only takes a lap, lap and a half max. That means we can make up time on every pit stop. The team worked very hard on the setup before we got to the Roar so we’re polishing it and making sure we don’t have any issues. So now that’s the key – if we can continue to keep pace with the other cars, we can be in with a shot to win on Sunday.
“But we know what direction we want to go for the race. We have another practice tonight to fine tune things, but I felt we could have gone quicker and gotten into the top five. But that’s qualifying pace, not ‘looking after everything’ pace!”
Team Manager David Price
“That really is the sort of time we thought we could do during the Roar,” said Price, “but we couldn’t get a clear lap. It was much easier to get a clear lap with only 18 cars on the track – you can get a clear lap the whole way if you’re clever. We achieved what we thought we could by doing times in the mid-1:39s. I was anticipating being in the top 10 and we are where we thought we should be.
“You go into every race thinking you can win it, otherwise there’s no point. It’s going to be hard over 24 hours, with all the DPs, but if we stay out of trouble and all the hard work we’ve put in over the past year starts to pay off, we’ve got a good chance.”
DeltaWing Racing Cars Managing Partner Don Panoz
“Horsepower and speed are important but endurance is key in a race like this,” said DeltaWing Racing Cars Managing Partner Don Panoz. “And in the end, it will be our technology that helps us go for 24 hours. We’re looking forward to the race!”
The Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona – the inaugural race in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and the first race of the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup – will take the green flag at 2:10pm ET on Saturday.