Michael Shank Racing ready to test new Honda 3.5 litre powerplant

Michael Shank Racing is gearing up for the upcoming two day IMSA test at Daytona International Speedway which will take place 17-18 November.

The test will present MSR with the opportunity to test their new Ligier tub which has been replaced after the two off-track incidents at Road Atlanta; it also marks the first test of Honda’s 3.5-litre twin-turbo V6 Prototype engine for the team.

“We’ve got a larger displacement motor – just looking at the 3.5, you can’t tell the difference to the (previous configuration) 2.8, but they’ve done a lot of lightening to it and a lot of durability running at HPD,” said Team Owner Mike Shank. “I’m excited about it because I really think we have something here to go up against the Daytona Prototypes.”

“The original 2.8-litre displacement was based on international rules that were initiated several years ago,” said Allen Miller, Honda Performance Development Race Team Leader.

More power for 2016 as Honda début their 3.5 litre engine
More power for 2016 as Honda début their 3.5 litre engine

“But looking towards the future with the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, we have a new set of regulations, and increasing the displacement to 3.5-litres should be the best way forward. We already have experience running this version of our engine in Daytona Prototype and other racing series, and we’re looking forward to seeing the engine run in the MSR Ligier at next week’s test and throughout 2016.”

John Pew and Ozz Negri will both take part in the test session which will see the addition of long-time Michael Shank Racing driver AJ Allmendinger on Wednesday.

“It is perfect timing for me to test with Mike Shank at Daytona on the way down to Homestead,” said Allmendinger,

“Last year, Daytona was the first time out with the new car (Ligier/Honda) and they’ve learned so much since then. So I am looking forward to getting back into it, especially with a bigger motor! This will be a great way to get some work done for the 24, so I am looking forward to it.”