Motor Sport News - - Racing News -

Two-time For­mula 1 world cham­pion and Le Mans 24 Hours win­ner Fer­nando Alonso says he re­turns to this month’s IMSA Sportscar Cham­pi­onship’s Day­tona 24 Hours ready to win.

Alonso con­tested last year’s event with the United Au­tosports team’s Ligier, but the car was not a match for the fron­trun­ners and even­tu­ally re­tired.

This time he has joined the Wayne Tay­lor Rac­ing team to drive a Cadil­lac DPI-V.R, which he tried for the first time on Fri­day as the of­fi­cial ‘Roar be­fore the 24’ pre-race test be­gan.

“The ex­pec­ta­tion is higher, but we will see at the end,” said Alonso, who shares the WTR ma­chine with Jor­dan Tay­lor, Renger van der Zande and his Toy­ota World En­durance Cham­pi­onship col­league Ka­mui Kobayashi.

“I think I’m in a much bet­ter po­si­tion this time than last year.

“This year I take all the ex­pe­ri­ence and learn­ing from last year – traf­fic man­age­ment, fuel sav­ing, how the US safety cars work – it’s all go­ing to be use­ful. That changes the ap­proach of the race. Last year [at Day­tona] was about prepa­ra­tion for Le Mans. This year is now about win­ning.”

WTR won Day­tona in 2005 and ’17, and Alonso’s car was se­cond fastest in Fri­day’s open­ing ses­sion then led the way in af­ter­noon prac­tice with Kobayashi.

The Joest-run Mazda team set the pace on the fi­nal day of the test, se­cur­ing a 1-2 with Harry Tinck­nell beat­ing team-mate Oliver Jarvis by 0.392 sec­onds.

In the sub­se­quent ‘qual­i­fy­ing’ ses­sion held to de­ter­mine pit­boxes and pit­stalls for the race, on Jan­uary 26/27, both Maz­das unof­fi­cially broke the track’s 26-year-old lap record at Day­tona’s road course.

Pho­tos: LAT

Alonso re­turns to Day­tona 24 Hours

Last year Alonso raced United Au­tosports’s Ligier at Day­tona, but car was off the pace and re­tired

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.