Dalziel Aiming for Back-to-Back Grand-Am Wins
- 05 June 2008
Orlando, Florida (June 05, 2008) – If the fabled motorsport expression, ‘You’re only as good as your last race!’ was to be applied to Ryan Dalziel then things look pretty good for the 26-year-old Lanarkshire racer. Victorious in last month’s ‘RumBum.Com 250’ at Laguna Seca, his maiden victory in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series Presented by Crown Royal Cask No.16, the Scottish ace sees no reason why he can’t challenge once again for victory in Round 6 this weekend, the ‘Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen’, hosted at Watkins Glen International Circuit, New York, Friday 6th – Saturday 7th June.
Dalziel’s Florida-based team, SAMAX Motorsport, has been the outfit to beat lately in the Daytona Prototype class, scoring back-to-back podium finishes in Round 4 at Virginia International Raceway in April, taking second place just 0.5 seconds behind the winner, and Round 5 at Laguna Seca two weeks ago, when Dalziel together with team-mate Henri Zogaib steered the #2 SAMAX BMW-Riley to the victory – a first in Grand-Am for both team and drivers.
Saturday’s six-hour race will see Dalziel and Zogaib joined on the driver line-up by Canada’s David Empringham. No stranger to Grand-Am competition, Empringham is a previous winner of the ‘Rolex 24 at Daytona’ as well as being a former Indy Lights and double Atlantics Champion. The 3.4-mile Watkins Glen International Circuit will welcome 19 Daytona Prototype entries along with 26 GT runners for Round 6 and it was in a SAMAX-entered Porsche GT3 Cup Car that Dalziel first debuted at the New York track back in 2005. Ryan’s two trips to Watkins Glen that season proved forgettable, with mechanical woes blighting his races but he owns a pair of top-ten finishes from 2006 when he returned in his rookie Daytona Prototype season.
“We’re heading into Watkins Glen with a ton of momentum following our last two races,” stated Dalziel. “Henri and I are really exited to have David Empringham join us for this event and we’re all hoping to gain from the down-time between events. The team was able to use that opportunity to make some additional improvements having stripped the car back to basics before rebuilding it ahead of the Watkins race. It goes without saying that I think we’re going to be strong again, not least due to the power of the Dinan motor. I definitely think we’ve got a good shot at winning this race!
"The win last time out at Laguna was fantastic and we all proved to ourselves we could do the job having come close on a bunch of occasions. I think we probably turned a few heads with our performance and hopefully we’ll get a bit more respect on-track as a result of our success. We’ve had the strongest car at Virginia and Laguna so all being well we’ll be quick off the back of the truck on Friday. I love the longer events like Daytona and Watkins Glen, I enjoy knowing I’m going to have a couple of stints in the car. There’s always an element of luck required in endurance racing but we’ve got a good team strategy and we’re certainly as prepared as we can be heading into Saturday’s event.”
Qualifying starts at 5pm EST on Friday 6th June with the ‘Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen’, Round 6 of the 2008 Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series, starting at 11:15am EST on Saturday 7th June.
SPEED will broadcast the race live from Watkins Glen from 11am to 1pm then again from 2:30pm through to 5:30pm EST – www.speedtv.com
For further series information please log on to – www.grand-am.com