Great day today! To start, I had an interview with SPEED TV's Jamie Howe on my involvement with ESM & Patron. Then I shook down John Baker's 2010 GT3-Cup Porsche for him today as he couldn't make the practice sessions. It was fun rejoining everyone from Orbit Racing and getting back into the #47. You know, John & I won the race here at Laguna last year in the #47 car, in the GT Challenge class. It was a nice little flashback - and I certainly hope to repeat again this year with a victory in the GT class!
Later this afternoon it was unofficial ALMS practice. HOLY CR@P is that #02 ESM Ferrari AWESOME around Laguna Seca! Especially after getting out of that Porsche (lower performance category car), our Ferrari was on RAILS! SO nice to drive, so well behaved, so well balanced - just pure sweetness!! I love this car! And, it was pretty fast too! I had to bed in a new set of brakes initially, so I wasn't able to get ripping until about 5 laps into the session after pulling in to the pits to let the brakes cool off. Then, I let it loose! On my 2nd flying lap, I set quickest time. Of course there was more left, so on my 3rd, I was going for a bit more, until I made a little whoopsy-doo and grabbed some curb on the entry to turn 6, and I was basically around before I even got to the apex. Hey, these things happen...! I buried it in the gravel, but Mazda Raceway's safety team had me out in no time - and the ESM crew also got the car cleaned up in to time as well, and we were back on track.
Obviously the car was good so we opted to get Ed in right away and let him start getting acclimated to the car and track, and work on getting up to speed. He did a good job and definitely improved as the session went along, and he feels real comfortable - which is the most important part. He'll certainly make some gains tomorrow as well - and we're looking forward to it!
Ultimately the time I set on that 2nd lap held well enough for 4th position at the end of the 1.5 hour session, so that wasn't too shabby - for just getting started! Things are looking good at the moment!
But, it's sleepy time for me. Morning practice at 9:50am PT, then another 1hr practice just before qualifying, which is around 3pm PT. For live timing & scoring online, go here: http://scoring.americanlemans.com/scoring.php
More news tomorrow!