The Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype has dominated the IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship leg at Detroit-Belle Isle in recent years, but the Michael Shank Racing Ligier-Honda JS P2 is fresh off of a win at Mazda Raceway Laguna – and it may be hard for the Chevy teams to break the squad’s momentum in front of General Motors’ home crowd.
What may be working against the No. 60 Honda Ligier JS P2 squad this weekend is the fact half the team is in Europe preparing for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, including driver John Pew. Usual DeltaWing driver Katherine Legge will fill his seat, racing the Prototype entry alongside Ozz Negri, however Legge has never driven the tricky 13-turn, 2.34 mile Belle Isle circuit.
“I am extremely grateful to Mike Shank and Honda for offering me this chance to drive and really appreciate that Dr. Panoz (Panoz DeltaWing Racing team owner) agrees that this is too good of an opportunity to miss as the DeltaWing is not racing,” Legge said. “Ozz has been sending me in-car footage and notes for me to study, and I hope to be as ready as possible from the start of the weekend. This is a fantastic opportunity for me, and I intend on making as much of it as I possibly can.”
Wayne Taylor Racing took victory at Detroit in 2013, 2014 and 2015, but the 2016 season has been “up and down,” so far, as driver Jordan Taylor put it. But Because of their previous successes in the Motor City, Jordan and his brother Ricky feel they can bounce back in the shadow of Detroit’s skyline.
“Detroit has been a strong event for us in the past, so I think we can look forward to bouncing back this weekend,” Jordan said. “It does give you a bit more confidence going into events like Detroit and Long Beach given our history at those events. Everyone has to be on their game from the beginning of the weekend, to maximize practice and qualifying to get a good starting spot for the race. They are true sprint races with just one pit stop, so it requires perfect execution from the whole team.”
The IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship will take to the track in Detroit this Saturday.