After months of preparation and planning, the Quantum team came together to compete in our new Spec Racer Ford. In case you missed it, the team recently made the switch from a Gen 2 to a Gen 3 Spec Racer Ford. The two key differences are powertrain and weight. The Gen 3 has about 10% more power thanks to a much more modern engine, and the minimum weight is reduced by 110 pounds (~50 kg). Although it took longer than expected to get the new car ready to race, everyone on the team is thrilled to be racing on a real race track again. The event took place at Daytona International Speedway on the weekend of September 24-25. Ahead of the race weekend, team manager Quentin De Boever had this to say: "The whole team is absolutely thrilled to head back to Daytona. It's an iconic venue and promotes close racing as drafting is such a huge factor. I just hope we can dust off the cobwebs and keep up with some of the other guys!"
The weekend was full of new challenges starting with the driver schedule. Bart De Boever ran the sprint races and shared the car with Quentin for the 2-hour enduro race. The sprint races proved beneficial for Bart as he qualified 5th for the first sprint race. Bart got underway cleanly for the 25-minute sprint race on Saturday. Then, he slowly kept increasing his pace as he got more comfortable with the car. By the end, he had made up a spot to take the checkered flag in 4th place! Unfortunately, his time was cut short in the 2nd sprint race as the team ran into some mechanical issues.
The enduro kicked off with qualifying on Sunday morning, where Quentin stepped into the cockpit for the first time. He would end up picking up 2nd in-class and 3rd overall for the start as he was still getting to grips with the new car. Bart took over to start the 2-hour race with a pit stop scheduled right at the halfway point so Quentin could jump back in. Consistent driving and more seat time allowed Bart to get faster and set his fastest lap of the weekend towards the end of his stint. A longer-than-anticipated pit stop saw Quentin come onto the track almost three laps down from the leader. However, he began to chip away lap after lap. This yielded the fastest lap time of anyone in the enduro, and 3rd in-class by the checkered flag. Not a bad comeback as he came from 24th to 5th overall!
Overall, it was a great weekend as both drivers found their groove again. We're excited for the next event, which should be at Sebring in late November! We also want to give a huge shoutout to all our sponsors and partners, which can be found in the "Partners" page on our website! In case you're hungry to watch a lap of Daytona, you can find Quentin's quickest lap from the enduro qualifying session below!