I had an exciting opportunity last week to work with a new team. It’s a client I worked with last season, but he is starting his own team this year. It’s always exciting to see a new program getting off the ground, along with all of the logistics required, like building the crew, acquiring equipment, learning a new car, and of course other factors, too.
We were at Sebring International Raceway—yes, I’ve been there a lot lately!—for a two-day test. The team took delivery of a new Gazoo Racing Supra GT4 there, and it was the first time the wheels had turned on track.
We couldn’t have asked for a more productive couple of days. Not only did we have great weather, but we had a mechanically flawless event, which allowed us to focus strictly on learning the new car from both a driving optimization standpoint and from a setup standpoint (further proof that the customer team model really does work!). This allowed us to do setup sweeps to see how the car responded to various settings.
It was the first time the team owner had ever driven a GT car, so learning the nuances of braking effort, efficiency and feeling aerodynamic grip were just a few of the things we focused on during the test. The car was a ton of fun to drive, and I was really impressed with all of the various systems, both electronically and mechanically, which were well designed.
The team executed a great test, and the drivers have a lot of confidence in the new program. The team has a bit more testing lined up prior to the start of the SRO World Challenge season, which will be the first weekend of March in Sonoma.
I’m excited to work with the team this season, and I look forward to keeping everyone posted on their success!