Saturday, January 28, 2017

2017 Daytona 24hr preview: GTD

GTD

Change Racing: This car has a healthy dose of big time sponsor decals on it sides. So it is rather surprising they do not have...lets say, a Spencer Pumpelly do lead the charge.

DAC Motorsports: Zach Claman is the only one who can keep any sort of pace with the leaders. Even then he is out of his element in a sports car, much less a 4hr race. But it's a nice step in a possible future carer direction for him.

Konrad Motorsport: A solid globe trotting squad, but mainly here for the exquisite experience.

Manthey Racing: In Europe they're Porsche's dedicated factory team in various championships. Here however they're running a GT3 car for a customer. Secretely they would like to finish ahead of all Porsche teams especially Core autosport's GTLM entry. Despite their supreme expertise with Porsche vehicles their lineup might not quite allow much beyond a respectable race. But Sven Muller will dice it up with anyone that tries to get by.

Stevenson Motorsports: Nice team, nice lineup. But the driving squad is built on camaraderie rather than performance.

SunEnergy1 Racing: Last year they took refuge in one of Stevenson's Audis, and beat the Stevenson lineup. We're not sure having their own squad will be as effective as Stevenson's crew, but as long as Tristan Vautier is doing the lion's share of the driving again, they'll have pace when they need it. Oui, oui.

Alegra Motorsports: They have Michael Christenssen from Porsche factory driver fame, but all the Porsches have a factory driver, and all the big players have their own factory drivers as well. But Daniel Morad the in-house hot-shoe can make a difference.

Dream Racing Motorsport: Despite the Lamborghini Huracan's sultry looks, and prowess and high speed circuits, it hasn't quite set the Weathertech championship ablaze. But we have a more cheerful prognosis for the other 3 remaining Huracans.

Spirit of Race: Just as Manthey is here running a car for a customer this team is actually AF Corse running a 488 GT3 for Peter Mann.

Park Place Motorsports: Patrick Lindsay and Matt mcMurry are the perfect example of Silver rated drivers. This car will chug along at a steady pace. If Super Silvers or Sneaky Silvers did not exist they would be ranked higher.

CORE Autosport: Their titles and accomplishments in Prototype Challenge suggests they should be ranked higher. And their intimate bond with the Porsche brand gives them intimate knowledge of the car. but The owner is used to being the slowest thing on track.

Turner Motorsport: They're planning to win it, but endurance races aren't usually kind to last minute crews. And we personally do not think the M6 has the nimbleness of the cars.

TRG: the dark horse of the race. They have been out for a year, but have come back with a solid lineup. Their Porsche expertise is unquestioned, they could spring a surprise.

Alex Job Racing: Rescue project for Alex Job. But there has to be a reason no one is signing up with such a storied group. Others are getting...gasp...better?

Riley Motorsports - Team AMG: This would have been higher ranked i it were not for the main man Ben Keating also running in Prototype Challenge, and Jeroen Bleekemolen also being listed in te Weathertech car. The lineup in the PC car in which Mr Keating is to drive is where his real chance of victory lies. They're simply running for points here. But with some factory backing this is still a threat for a podium.

GRT Grasser Racing Team 61: They share 2 drivers with their sister #11 car but we think that car has a slight edge with 1 less amateur.

GRT Grasser Racing Team 11: Ezequiel makes the difference for us. here.

3GT Racing 15: We do not have much faith in Paul Gentilozzi's squad because we felt they underperformed in Prototype Challenge, and they fumbled that Jaguar GT2 project years back. But it's a new era now.

Scuderia Corsa: A heavy favorite to win it. But let's see how the drivers handle the pressure of being among the elites contenders.

Paul Miller Racing: We think this is the best Lamborghini crew. Not because of speed, but because of its steady lineup and proven stability.

Michael Shank Racing 93: They could be there at the end but reliability can be an issue.

Michael Shank Racing 86; The presence of Jeff Segal and Hunter Reay here makes us give them the nod over the sister car.

Montaplast by Land-Motorsport: Even the team's livery hints at their speed, because they're all fast here. It's just that the teams above them have drivers, and crews who have more intimate knowledge of Daytona.

3GT Racing 14: only because Scott Pruett is here. There's esoteric knowledge of the race in this car.

Aston Martin Racing: Well balanced squad and very experienced

Riley Motorsports - WeatherTech Racing: The combination of the drivers, team, and car says to us they have the overall best package. But anything can happen.