SRT Motorsports concluded a strong Roar Before the 24 test weekend at Daytona in preparation for the Rolex 24 at Daytona at the end of the month.
Both the #91 and #93 SRT Viper GTS-Rs set their fastest times in the afternoon session of the opening day’s action. The #91 clocked a time of 1:46.043 while the sister machine managed a time of 1:46.134. The #91 machine also topped the GTLM class in the final session of the weekend – 15th fastest overall.
“We were here for some private testing before and came back here to continue what we were doing then,” explained driver of the #91 machine, Marc Goosens, who shares the Viper with Dominik Farnbacher and Ryan Hunter-Reay. “We took it to another level and everything seems to be working just fine, no issues. The car is good. Of course, the weather has changed a lot over the three days – we’ve had very cold, a reasonable day and now today it feels like a real Florida day – so it’s good to be able to test and try out tires in different weather conditions to see which tire is working at its optimum. This was a great opportunity to get all the new drivers like Rob (Bell) in the 93 car and Ryan in our car to give them the mileage to get used to the car. They were right up to the pace of the other guys, as expected. I don’t think there are any complaints.”
“It’s been fantastic so far – actually really good to be here,” added Rob Bell, who drives the #93 car alongside Kuno Wittmer and Jonathan Bomarito. “I felt really welcome in the team and it’s nice to be a part of the family. I’m getting up to speed with the Viper now and I’ve done enough running to know that we’ve got a good base car and I feel pretty at home already.”
The SRT Motorsports entries to the 2014 Rolex 24 at Daytona marks the return of Chrysler Group to the traditonal curtain-raising event since 2000, when the Dodge Viper GTS-R claimed victory overall.
“This race is a big deal for us,” said Director of Motorsports Marketing and Operations for Chrysler Group, Beth Paretta. “We haven’t raced with this team at Daytona. The last time we were here in 2000 we won overall. We certainly have quite a legacy to live up to. In fact, the car that won overall we still have in our collection. It’s never been cleaned so it has all of its 14-year old race wear on it, so we’re reminded of it all of the time. We know that the Viper, in particular, has quite a legacy. That is not lost on any of us.”