18 February, 2014
After making a successful US racing debut at the Daytona 24 Hours last month, British racer Matt Bell returns to America this week to take part in the two-day Sebring Test. Matt will drive the Paul Miller Racing Audi R8 LMS this Thursday and Friday in preparation for the Sebring 12 Hours, which takes place at the Sebring International Raceway in Florida on 15th March.
After heading for a top finish at Daytona before being scuppered by a water leak, Bell is looking to score his first US podium at Sebring, which will provide him with a new challenge.
“I learnt a lot at Daytona, especially when it came to the safety car procedure which is very different to what I’m used to in Europe,” he said. “Sebring will present it’s own set of challenges. It is completely different to Daytona where the defining feature is the banking and, even with a lot of traffic, it’s ok as there aren’t that many corners. This will be my first time at Sebring but I have heard all about it. It is an incredibly bumpy, rough and ready race track, especially when you are on what was once a concrete runway for B52 bombers!”
The circuit might be new to Matt but he knows the car, the Audi R8 LMS, better than any other.
“I enjoyed racing the Audi at Daytona,” he explained. “We set the fastest lap of the race in the GTD class and started from pole so we know we have the pace to win. I’m feeling very positive going into this event and the fact we can go out there to test a month before the race is a great benefit to Sebring rookies like me as I get to learn the track before it really matters.”
The Sebring Test takes place this Thursday and Friday and the Sebring 12 Hours gets underway on 15th March.