SEBRING, FL, Friday, 14 March 2014: Danish ace Jan Magnussen is eagerly awaiting two races this weekend as the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship heads to the oldest endurance race in North America – the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.
Magnussen and Corvette Racing teammates Antonio Garcia and Ryan Briscoe will be looking to record a strong points finish after a cooling problem ended their race early at the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
Their week at Sebring kicked off strongly with Garcia recording the third fastest time of the opening practice session on Thursday.
But after the checkered flag on Saturday night, Magnussen’s attention to turn to the other side of the world where his son Kevin will make his Formula 1 debut in Australia for McLaren.
Both Magnussen senior and junior were championship winners in 2013 – Jan winning the American Le Mans Series GT championship with Garcia and Kevin dominating the World Series by Renault Formula Renault 3.5 championship to take the crown.
Sebring has been a happy hunting ground for both Corvette Racing and Magnussen in the past The Pratt & Miller-run team has won here at the historic Florida airfield circuit on nine occasions while the ex-Formula 1 Danish ace has three Sebring victories to his credit.
Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring
Schedule (All times Eastern):
Thursday, March 13, 2014
9:55 am -10:55 am: Practice – TUDOR (All Classes)
4:05 pm – 5:05 pm: Practice – TUDOR (All Classes)
8:00 pm – 9:30 pm: Night Practice – TUDOR (All Classes)
Friday, March 14, 2014
9:55 am – 10:55 am: Practice – TUDOR (All Classes)
11:15 am – 12:00 pm: TUDOR Autograph Session
4:10 pm – 4:25 pm: Qualifying – TUDOR (GTD)
4:30 pm – 4:45 pm: Qualifying – TUDOR (GTLM)
4:55 pm – 5:10 pm: Qualifying – TUDOR (PC)
5:15 pm – 5:30 pm: Qualifying – TUDOR (P)
Saturday, March 15, 2014
8:00 am – 8:25 am: Warm Up – TUDOR (All Classes)
10:15 am – 10:15 pm: Race – 62nd Annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida for the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship (Round 2) – 12 Hours
Saturday, March 15
10:00 AM-01:00 PM EST on FOX Sports 1
Online Coverage – US and International
1:00 PM EST IMSA.com
JAN MAGNUSSEN Q&A
Q: HOW STRONG DO YOU THINK THE CAR WILL BE AT SEBRING?
A: “Going by the test we had, I think we are going to have quite a good car. I don’t know if we’ll be able to fight with the Porsches but it’s a long race. I think a lot of other things will play into how the race will come out.
“I’m pretty confident and very happy going into this race with what we’ve got.”
“Traffic will be the main thing. I didn’t do the last test but I know the guys that were here said that the traffic is going to play a huge part.
“There’s a lot of GT Daytona cars out there fighting for their own race, and going slower than us, so you can’t rely on anything. That’s the same for everybody so we just have to deal with it the best we can.”
“I always enjoy racing there but what makes it a challenge is the different types of surfaces, all of the bumps. That’s always one of the big headaches. The whole challenge of it makes it so special.”
Q: DOES IT FEEL STRANGE WITH SEBRING BEING THE SECOND ROUND OF THE CHAMPIONSHIP?
A: “It doesn’t change things a lot but it’s different from the other years. At least now, we’ll go into Sebring with a much better idea of what the competition is going to be like and hopefully we can have a better race because of that.
“We still have a bit of catching up to do from Daytona. We’re just going into the race trying to win it and if we can’t win it, we’ll try to get as many points as possible.”
Q: WHAT DO YOU THINK OF CORVETTE’S PADDOCK SET-UP
A: “That is pretty cool and is definitely taking the most advantage of the available space.
“It looks good and feels like there’s a lot more space than we had last year, even though it’s less. It sure stands out in the paddock!”
Q: HOW MUCH ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO FOLLOWING KEVIN’S F1 DEBUT THIS WEEKEND?
A: “It’s unbelievable that it’s happening. I wish I could be there, obviously, but I’ll follow the best I can.
“Luckily, all of his running is at times when I won’t be running myself, so I can keep an eye on everything and follow on TV and live timing.
“It’s super exciting and I know I have to focus on my own stuff until that’s over. I need to make the best of Sebring first. But I’m not 100% sure how to handle the situation!”
Q: IS THERE ANY KIND OF ADVICE YOU GAVE HIM BEFORE HE LEFT?
A: “It’s just an exciting time for him. I’ve spoken to him over the last couple of days. There’s real no good advice I can give him. It’s just about making sure he’s happy.
“He seems very focused about it and is not very nervous. He wants to get going but obviously there are a lot of unknowns for him.
“I think with the scope of being a Formula One driver, he’s starting to realize what it’s all about. He needs to try to learn to cope with those things. It starts this weekend.”
Q: WHAT’S THE REACTION BEEN LIKE BACK HOME IN DENMARK?
A: “Unbelievable. Everybody wants a piece of him now and there’s a lot of demand on his time. McLaren is doing a fantastic job protecting him as best they can from all of it so he can just concentrate on what he can do.
“But there’s a huge reaction from all of this in his hometown – even the local cinemas are showing F1 on the big screen. It’s pretty cool.”