IMSA

CORE Autosport Prepared For First Rolex 24

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CORE Autosport kicked off the Roar Before the 24 test session in top form, setting the fastest time in the PC category in the opening session, standing as the second-fastest time all weekend.

An uncharacteristically cold Daytona provided the scene for the first taste of the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship on Friday, with Colin Braun taking the #54 Oreca FLM09 to the top of the PC category.

However, as temperatures rose throughout the weekend, the speeds rose. After all eight sessions, Braun’s time of 1:42.468 still stood as the second-fastest time across the weekend, sitting just 0.107 seconds off of the top spot.

“The car was pretty good off the truck,” offered Braun. “Our best time of the whole weekend was in the first session. We ran through a lot of setup matrixes and changes to try and build our database of information for Daytona, which is a roval that has its own unique characteristics. We’ve succeeded in collecting a good deal of data and we all got a lot of seat time.”

Sharing driving duties with Braun in the Oreca during the test was team owner Jon Bennett and Mark Wilkins, with the team preparing for its first attempt at the Rolex 24 and its first ever race on a ‘roval’.

“It was nice to get a solid test in with the car,” added Bennett. “It was neat that we had three different kinds of weather over the last three days, which really helps with tuning. We’re starting to gel as a crew with our new engineer Tom Brown and I think we have a nice package for 2014. It’s been good to sit down, get back to work, see everyone in the paddock and start the season. We don’t spend much time thinking about the championship. We think about how well do we execute each day. It seems if you focus on how you perform each day and don’t get too excited with the ups and don’t get too disappointed with the downs, then you get the best result you can get. I think we’ll stick with that formula.”

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