8Star Motorsports and Enzo Potolicchio stood atop the winners’ rostrum at Daytona International Speedway after storming to class victory in the inaugural Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) Classic 24 Hour at Daytona (16 November).
The 24 Hours of Daytona has grown in stature since its inception in 1966 and is now a premier fixture on the international motorsport calendar, widely regarded as part of the informal ‘Triple Crown of Endurance Racing’ that encompasses three of the world’s most formidable races, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the 12 Hours of Sebring.
The inaugural Classic 24 Hour at Daytona celebrates a rich and illustrious history spanning almost half a century. Cars from the Historic Sportscar Racing and Trans Am Series resplendently return to Daytona International Speedway, the many functioning museum pieces from 1961 to the present day conveying the 24 Hours of Daytona’s story as they compete on the world-renowned circuit from 13.00 on Saturday (15 November) through to 13.00 on Sunday (16 November).
Over 130 cars spread over six era-defined classes took to the legendary 3.56mile circuit, which combines a large part of the renowned NASCAR tri-oval with a fast, sweeping infield road course.
8Star Motorsports entered the Class E battle with a sole 2013 Coyote Corvette Daytona Prototype for Enzo Potolicchio and, while the inaugural Classic 24 Hours of Daytona was designed to showcar and embrace sportscars of years gone by, a fight broke out during the four one-hour races.
Potolicchio made an immediate impact on the historical event and raced bumper-to-bumper with the Audi R8 LMP1 of Andy Wallace and Doug Smith – the only two competitors to finish on the lead lap – bringing his orange-liveried Corvette home first in class and second overall after 88 tours of the legendary Daytona circuit, much to the delight of both driver and team.
Delighted to have concluded 8Star Motorsport’s 2014 season with yet another piece of silverware, Potolicchio said: “Everything went as planned and, as this was our first Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) event, it was really cool to be involved in the inaugural Classic 24 at Daytona,” said Potolicchio. “As always, the 8Star Motorsports team and the Coyote Corvette DP performed well and finishing second overall and first in class is just reward for a fantastic effort by all concerned.
“We experimented with setup changes for each race and felt really happy with the handling of the car, but I thoroughly enjoyed being back in the Corvette after almost a year out of the cockpit. It was nice to blow the cobwebs off and run against some other great classic racecars on what remains a legendary circuit – the Daytona International Speedway. I have to admit, the Classic 24 was more exhausting than the real Rolex 24 at Daytona and, as we found that a completely different strategy was required, we had a bit of learning to do. Adapting to the new strategies was the biggest challenge and we had to figure it out on the fly, but it all worked out.”