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Racing News: Lance Stroll to Make Sports Car Debut With Ford Chip Ganassi Racing

Compiled by SEMA Editors

Lance Stroll will make his sports car and 24-hour race debut when he competes in the Rolex 24 at Daytona with Ford Chip Ganassi Racing next month.

Formula Three Race Winner Stroll to Make Sports Car Debut With Ford Chip Ganassi Racing

Lance Stroll will make his sports car and 24-hour race debut when the Canadian competes in the Rolex 24 at Daytona with Ford Chip Ganassi Racing next month (January 30–31). The 17-year-old will co-drive a Ford EcoBoost Prototype with Brendon Hartley (New Zealand), Alex Wurz (Austria) and Andy Priaulx (Great Britain) in Florida’s legendary twice-around-the-clock race. Geneva-based Stroll, who last month was invited by Williams Martini Racing to join its Young Driver Development Programme, has only previously competed in single-seaters. Stroll will drive the 3.5L, 600-bhp Ford for the first time during the three-day “Roar Before The 24” test (January 8–10) and acquaint himself to the 3.56-mile Daytona International Speedway track he has never previously visited. Indianapolis-based Ford Chip Ganassi Racing will bid for a seventh victory in the annual Daytona race following wins in ’06–’08, ’11, ’13 and ’15.

Veteran Racer Russ Gamester is Ready to Challenge a Star-Studded Field of Racers at Allentown, Pennsylvania, Indoor Event

When the 80 three-quarter (TQ) Midget drivers take to the specially constructed indoor race track inside the PPL Center in Allentown, Pennsylvania, this Saturday, January 2, 2016, one veteran driver, 50-year old Russ Gamester of Peru, Indiana, will have an advantage. Gamester won an indoor race last Saturday night in Fort Wayne, Indiana, making him the only driver in the Ironton Telephone Avaya TQ Midget indoor race field who carries the rush of recent victory into the PPL Center. He will be one of three drivers competing in new cars, developed by Ohio Supermodified constructor John Bodnar, being built by Pennsylvania fabricator BJ McDonald and commissioned by TQ Midget driver Lou Cicconi Jr. Pennsylvania Small-Block Modified driver Jeff Strunk and ARDC/USAC Midget Car favorite Alex Bright will be Gamester’s teammates. The Allentown race is first of three events in the Indoor Auto Racing Championship Series Fueled By VP Racing Fuels. Racing in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and Trenton, New Jersey, complete the series.

Tracy Krohn
Nic Jonsson
Pierre Kaffer
Christopher Haase

Flying Lizard Motorsports and Krohn Racing Partner for the Rolex 24 at Daytona

Flying Lizard Motorsports and Krohn Racing have joined forces for competition in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship's Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway. The Audi Sport customer racing team will run the No. 45 Audi R8 LMS—the same car that finished second in the 2014 running of the event. Flying Lizard Motorsports has previously raced the 24 Hours of Daytona seven times, earning three podiums and two pole positions.

Krohn Racing founder Tracy Krohn created Krohn Racing in 2005, and entered the team into international competition in GRAND-AM Road Racing, the American Le Mans Series and FIA World Endurance Championship. Krohn Racing has celebrated three podium finishes at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2007, 2009 and 2012. The collaboration of the two championship-winning teams will feature an all-star driver line up of Krohn, Nic Jonsson and Audi Sport customer racing drivers Pierre Kaffer and Christopher Haase. The 2016 season will mark Jonsson's 26th year racing professionally, and his 12th full season with Krohn.

Although other competitors in the WeatherTech GTD class will run the new Audi R8 LMS, the Flying Lizard will continue to run the same Audi R8 LMS as before, but upgraded to the homologated GT3 spec. Adding more aerodynamic grip, the car will run a larger rear wing, bigger front splitter, bigger dive planes and a different diffuser. Unlike the previous years, the car will also be allowed to run with ABS and traction control. Running the same engine and transmission that it ran last year in IMSA's GTD class, this is also the same configuration the team ran this month at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, where the team ran issue free and finished on the top step over 56 other cars.

The official series test for the Rolex 24, the Roar Before the 24, will take place at Daytona International Speedway January 8-10. The official on-track activities for the Rolex 24 at Daytona begin January 28, 2016.