Sports car racer Michael Valiante led a near sweep for Ford following three days of practice sessions leading up to the 51st Rolex 24 Hour at Daytona road race in Florida on Jan. 27.
The New Westminster-born professional driver posted the fastest lap time at the Roar Before the Rolex 24 during the three-day test, racing the No. 6 Michael Shank Racing Ford Riley to the head of the pack on Saturday.
Valiante clocked speeds in excess of 202 kilometres per hour to edge out Shank teammate A.J. Allmendinger in the No. 60 Ford in Daytona Protype testing. Allmendinger, last year's defending Daytona champion, posted the best lap in Sunday's final session.
Finishing runner-up was the new Daytona Team Sahlen's BMW Riley sports car driven by Dane Cameron.
"This test is always a challenge, because you have so many drivers here," said Valiante in an online press release. "I have a lot of time in these cars, so our team's focus was to get the drivers who do not have much time in prototypes cycled through the car. It's a brand-new car and we had no problems. It's a bonus to have the quickest car out there. I feel everyone hasn't shown everything they've got at this point, but I'm confident we'll be strong when we come back for the Rolex 24." email@example.com