United Autosports on ‘Steep Learning Curve’ at Daytona – Hanson


Credit: Jake Galstad LAT Images, Courtesy of IMSA

Phil Hanson says United Autosports just need to find the key to unlock the performance in their Ligier JS P217 ahead of the Rolex 24 at Daytona as he adjusted to many different conditions alien to his European roots during the ROAR before the 24 last week.

The Briton, who will share the #23 with Fernando Alonso and Lando Norris in the twice-around-the-clock race at the Daytona International Speedway at the end of January, experienced Continental tyres for the first time, and coupled with the cold weather, it made for tricky conditions for the team.

Hanson, the 2016/17 Asian Le Mans Series champion in the LMP3 class, experienced the Ligier JS P217 last year whilst racing a partial campaign in the European Le Mans Series as well in the 2017 24 Hours of Le Mans and selected other FIA World Endurance Championship races, but is now ready for his first attack on the Rolex 24 with the car.

“It’s a steep learning curve getting to grips with our new aero package combined with running on Continental rubber, a tyre which is completely alien to us in Europe, and in cold weather conditions,” said Hanson.

“It’s a case of finding the key to unlock the performance but I’m sure we’ll ultimately get the sweet spot.

“The Speedway is incredible – the steepness of the banking is amazing – but I quickly adapted to it. I’m already counting down the days to coming back here for race week.”