Visit Florida Racing at Long Beach

Sixth at Long Beach

Long Beach, Calif. (16 April 2016) – Visit Florida Racing sprinted through the streets of Long Beach for 100 minutes of IMSA WeatherTech action to bring home a sixth place result with the No. 90 Visit Florida Racing Corvette DP on Saturday.

Visit Florida Racing drivers Marc Goossens and Ryan Hunter-Reay both found themselves fighting traction issues through the BUBBA Burger Sports Car Grand Prix. The constantly-changing track surface didn’t provide the corner exit grip that the Prototype machine needed to make forward progress through the field on the 1.968-mile temporary street circuit.

After a start that saw the front row leap into action before the field had made it through the final hairpin corner, Goossens slotted into sixth and looked to take fifth. Unfortunately, that ambition was put on hold for lap after lap as the Belgian fought to get the launch out of the corners that he needed to make forward progress.

“I started to lose the rear, which meant that I couldn’t go to the power because it’s already gone into an oversteer,” said Goossens. “We’re still struggling with our electronics, our traction control is not helping us where it should be. It just gets worse when the tires get used. I didn’t even start on new tires, I started on used tires from qualifying. And when we were sitting behind the DeltaWing, they have so much traction to drive off. I could only catch them under braking trying to keep up so by doing it I ruined my tires even more.”

Hunter-Reay took over the controls on a mid-race green flag pit stop that the team executed to plan. Despite the new set of Continental Tires, Hunter-Reay wasn’t able to make up the ground that the team needed to make a run at the podium. Despite some quick lap times, the overall race pace had the Indy 500 champion focused on making it to the finish.

“I was just hanging on there through most of my stint, we just didn’t have the traction that we needed with the Visit Florida car,” offered Hunter-Reay as he made history with his IMSA-IndyCar Series double outing weekend. “The way the race started, we were 10 seconds back to start and then Marc (Goossens) had a hard time with the rear tires just trying to pass the DeltaWing. We burnt the rear tires off and our race kind of snowballed from there. I was as conservative as I could be with the tires, and just happy to be able to keep ahead of Negri (seventh place) there at the end.”

“We lost some traction in qualifying and we tried some things to get it back,” said team owner Troy Flis. “We thought we had a pretty good race car but at the beginning of the race we lost rear traction and couldn’t get it back. Toward the end of the race, Hunter-Reay had some pace but not exactly what we needed. We were just too far back again. We have to find out what we were lacking there. We have a test coming up so we’re excited about that. We’ll work hard and find out why we’ve lost this traction or why these other guys have picked up more than what we’ve got. So we’ll just work hard and get it better.”

Visit Florida Racing will be back in IMSA action in two weeks time as the team looks to add another race victory at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on May 1st. Ryan Dalziel will return to Visit Florida Racing duty along with Goossens. The duo will test the No. 90 Visit Florida machine ahead of the race outing and will look to make progress on the handling and grip on offer from the Corvette DP.