IROC Road Test A Success
January 8, 2006 | 7:37 P.M. EST
“It’s been 14-years since we’ve been on a road course and our accomplishments over the past three days exceeded our expectations, given the fact that we were borrowing track time from Grand-Am in short spurts,” said IROC President, Jay Signore. “We’re very grateful to everyone at DIS and the Rolex Grand American Rolex Series for allowing us to run between their 24-hour race testing sessions just to get a feel for the right handers again.”
Crown Royal IROC test drivers, Dave Marcis and Jay Sauter were able to total up about a halfdozen three to four lap test runs in addition to one longer run in the final session on Saturday.
“We were able to make significant gains and improve on the race cars each time out,” said Marcis. “I think it’s great for us to be back on a road course, especially since we have road racers involved in the series. No doubt, it will add a degree of excitement and give road racers a shot at showing off their skills a bit more.”
Adding a special touch to the nostalgia of hitting the 3.56-mile course at DIS for the first time since IROC’s inaugural season of racing 30-years ago, was the addition of road racer David Donohue, son of the late Mark Donohue who clinched the inaugural IROC championship by winning on the IROC road course race at DIS.
“It was a ball and I’m so jealous of the Grand-Am guys who get to compete in IROC,” said David Donohue. “We only had about a 10-lap run, I was running with Jay (Sauter) and after a few laps of learning the car we really getting on it and had a lot of fun. It was also very emotionally special for me to get the opportunity to run in the IROC cars during this test, IROC’s first time back on the road course at Daytona since my dad won here. That coupled with great test results in my Grand-Am car, I’ve got a lot to be smiling about today.”
Jay Sauter said, “Getting a chance to run with David Donohue was instrumentally huge. He’s turned a ton of laps here on the road course throughout the years and was able to trim a full two-seconds off of our lap times. He also confirmed what Marcis and I were feeling about how good the IROC cars were getting around here, which has us leaving this initial test knowing it’s only going to get better.”
The Daytona road course event is Race Three of the four-race invitational all-star series, which also includes events held at one superspeedway and two intermediate tracks. The series will make return engagements to three of the tracks it competed at in 2005. The season-opener will be contested at Daytona on the 2.5-mile, high-bank tri-oval on Friday, February 17, followed by a pair of intermediate tracks: Texas Motor Speedway on Friday, April 7 and the season finale at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday, October 28.