Matt Bell Ready for His First Petit Le Mans
Wednesday 1st October 2014
Matt Bell will embark on the third leg of his American racing adventure when he competes at Road Atlanta this weekend. The Geordie racer made his US competitive debut back in January at the Daytona 24 Hours. This was the first of a three-race run in the Paul Miller Racing Audi R8 LMS. He also competed in the Sebring 12 Hours for the team before heading back to the UK for the start of the British GT Championship season.
Now that the British GT season is over Matt has returned to the US for the race known as ‘Petit Le Mans’. Awaiting him in Atlanta, Georgia is a fantastic race track and 10 hours of hard and fast racing into the night this Saturday.
Matt will race the No.48 Audi, alongside Germany’s Christopher Haase and the American racer Bryce Miller.
“We’re going into this race with high expectations,” said Matt. “The team has taken podium finishes this year so it would be great to think we can do that again. I’m really happy to finally be doing Petit Le Mans. The race is a big deal in the US and a huge part of their racing history. It’s going to be a challenge but I can’t wait to get stuck in.”
The first challenge facing Matt is that he needs to learn the track as he has never raced at Road Atlanta.
“I’ve done all the usual preparation,” he explained. “Watching hours of onboard footage on YouTube to learn which way the circuit goes. Now I need to get on the track and try it out for real.”
This race will also provide one of the rare moments when Matt races against his brother, Rob, although they compete in different classes. Matt is in the GT Daytona (GTD) class while Rob is in the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class.
“It’s always good to be on track with Rob,” said Matt. “At Daytona earlier this year we both took the lead in our respective classes at the same time so it would be great if we could do even better and take a class win each this time out!”
GTD Qualifying for Petit Le Mans takes place this Friday at 16:20 local time and the 10-hour race gets underway on Saturday at 11:15 local time. Atlanta is five hours behind the UK so look out for the race, live on Motors TV this Saturday from 4pm.