TINCKNELL RELISHING DAYTONA DEBUT WITH FORD CHIP GANASSI RACING TEAM
Harry Tincknell‘s burgeoning career ticks off another box next weekend (28-29 Jan) when the Briton competes in the Rolex 24 At Daytona. The 25-year-old makes his Daytona International Speedway debut driving a Ford Chip Ganassi Ford GT along with co-drivers Andy Priaulx (GB), an ex-European and World Touring Car Champion, and former Indy 500 race winner and INDYCAR Champion Tony Kanaan (Brazil). Goodridge supported Tincknell, who scored seven GTE Pro top-five finishes in the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship – including two stunning class wins, is part of a four-car “works” Ford effort contesting the opening round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
The 24 Hours of Daytona, currently known as the Rolex 24 At Daytona for sponsorship reasons, is a 24-hour sports car endurance race held annually at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. It is run on a 3.56-mile combined road course, utilising portions of the NASCAR tri-oval and an infield road course. The race, notoriously merciless on both driver and machine, is regarded as a “classic” like Le Mans. Unlike the French race, the Daytona event is conducted entirely over a closed course within the speedway arena without the use of any public streets. Most parts of the steep 31 degree banking are included, interrupted with a chicane on the back straight and a sweeping, fast infield section which includes two hairpins. The 55th running of the twice-around-the-clock world-famous event is scheduled to start on Saturday at 2.30pm.
Harry says: “The Daytona 24 Hours is a ‘classic’ race along with Le Mans, plus other sportscar races in North America at Sebring and Petit Le Mans [Road Atlanta]. I won class honours at Le Mans in 2014 and the 2016 European Le Mans Series title but I’m hungry to add a Daytona victory to my CV. Testing there earlier this month with the Ford team went well. We worked through our programme while I got up to speed with the track. The Ford GTs were always at the sharp end of the timesheets so that bodes well for this weekend. I went to Daytona for the first time last year as a spectator and drove on the famous ‘banked’ track for the first time a couple of weeks ago. It’s the race I've most wanted to do for the last two years. Going there with Ford makes it extra special. I’ll be racing for Ford Chip Ganassi Racing again in the FIA World Endurance Championship which gets underway at Silverstone in April so the Daytona event will get the whole team in the groove. Another 24 hour race will help us develop the car for Le Mans and it gets the new guys in the team up to speed with pit stops before our main season starts. It also gets me race sharp. My WEC team-mate Andy Priaulx will share the Ford along with IndyCar single-seater ‘star’ Tony Kanaan. He’s a very nice guy, was immediately on the pace and has a lot of experience of Daytona. He'll definitely be quick and wants to win the race again. We’ve got a very experienced line up in our car which I can learn from.”