Seb Morris admits to being delighted that he will make his 24 Hour debut at the end of January when he participates in the 24 Hours of Daytona in the #31 Whelen Engineering Racing entry.
The Briton is participating in the event thanks to winning the Sunoco Whelen Challenge title in 2016 after a strong maiden campaign in British GT, and speaking to The Checkered Flag at the Autosport International Show, Morris admitted that the ride at Daytona is the biggest so far of his career, and that the team he’s racing for is at a different level to what he’s been used to so far.
“This place here, Sunoco, obviously they’ve given me the drive of my life time, I can’t thank them enough and more than happy to repay them by showing my face here and helping them out a bit,” said Morris to The Checkered Flag.
“I’ve done two tests now, and it’s exceeded my expectations and even more. The car is absolutely fantastic, the team are wonderful to work with, in terms of their professionalism, and their organisation, it’s just a different level over there.
“It’s like a miniature formula 1 team, they’ve got live data, they’ve got lasers seeing how high the car is, they’ve got tyre pressures, tyre temperatures, all sorts of systems to see if the car is in the perfect operating window, it is really cool, it is a proper sort of Le Mans team.
“The track’s really cool, it’s not extremely hard to drive, its different yes, the banking really cool when you go on it, but I got straight down to work. At the end of the day, it’s high speed down the straight and slow hairpins, so it’s actually quite easy to get used to.
“[But] it couldn’t have gone any better, I’ve loved going to and from America and testing that beast, 700 horsepower and it only weighs 900 kilograms, it’s pretty fast.”
Morris admits that having sponsors coming on board and not having to find his own sources to fund his driving is a nice change, and feels more appreciated as a result, while he feels the companies investing in his career should benefit greatly going forward.
“I’ve got so major sponsorship coming which is brilliant for me, so all moving forward, and hopefully with a few more sponsors on board I can start earning a wage from it in one way or another which should be brilliant,” said Morris.
“It’s a massive step forward when you know you don’t have to put any money in, it’s nice to be recognised for what I’m doing as well, and it’s nice when companies think they’ll benefit from it, which they should do.
“I think British GT television is going to go massive this year, so I’ve been hearing down the pipe line, so it will be interesting to see what they announce, looking forward to that extremely. Rick [Parfitt Jr] is back again, so we are going to wait to get it all sorted out and sign it and seal it.”
Morris is hopeful that his 24 Hours of Daytona appearance will open up doors in the world of manufacturers involved in endurance racing, and he revealed that those teams are reluctant to take a gamble on someone without long race experience despite showing good pace in his own races.
“It is great to have that ticked off my CV because the problem is for me, in terms of my age and manufacturers, they look at me, I’m young yes, I’m fast yes, but I’ve not had the experience of doing long races so you get overlooked” said Morris. “So to have the opportunity to do one of the biggest races in the world with the best team, sort of ticks that one off the list pretty nicely.
“I’m looking to do some WEC stuff next year as well, which will be nice, so hopefully I’ll be nice and busy.”