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2019 Daytona Rolex 24 articles are starting here

Old 11-28-2018, 10:36 PM
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Continued from post #1



With that system, Zanardi will control the car via a steering wheel-mounted throttle in the form of a ring of the same diameter as the steering wheel, which he will pull towards himself to accelerate. Upshifts are engaged through a right-hand paddle as normal. The brakes will be operated via a lever on his right, akin to the rear brake handle typical found on rally cars. That lever will also house a trigger that will allow Zanardi to brake and downshift simultaneously with his right hand while controlling steering and throttle with his left. A redundant downshift button on the steering wheel will allow Zanardi to quickly drop a gear in circumstances where braking is not required. The M8 GTE will use a centrifugal clutch, eliminating the need for a hand control to operate it.
During pit stops with a driver change, Zanardi will swap the steering wheel for his own. Although BMW is yet to determine all the choreography of having him change places with the his co-drivers, he suspects that it will be faster without legs, and that he may even attempt to exit the car through the passenger side into a waiting wheelchair.
"The decision is not yet 100 percent made [about driving without his prosthetics], but in the testing we have done I was able to stay in the car all day after a year and a half of not being in a racecar with no problems, so that is the way to go in my view," says Zanardi. "I've been able to drive the car at a very good speed, but I want to go faster. So the engineers in Munich are working to improve the systems, especially around the braking feel in the lever. Very good is not enough, it has to be right."
Developing the car just for Zanardi is one thing, but the task is to create a solution that works on equal terms for Zanardi and his co-drivers. Until now, Zanardi has always driven with his prosthetic legs because he's used one leg for braking, mostly in an effort to free up his hands from doing too many things, which in the beginning included driving a car with an H-pattern gearbox. While this method has served him well for shorter sprint races, the physical toll during endurance races is substantially higher. Plus, there are complications with the prosthetic legs on driver changes and car set-up.

"Up until 2015 for the 24-hour race at Spa, using my legs to brake worked so well that I was able to win multiple races," says Zanardi. "But at Spa, in order for the other drivers to feel like the car worked for them too, we decided to add a second brake pedal for me to the right of the throttle pedal.
"This brake pedal was linked to the main brake pedal so that they would both work at the same time. Timo and Bruno had their brake and throttle pedal as normal, and I had mine to the far right, with a foot rest on the far left. The difference with that brake pedal compared to what I had used before was in the connection to my prosthetic foot. Whereas before the brake had a kind of socket that my prosthetic shoe would slide into, we opted instead [at Spa] to create a connection via a rod that came up from the brake pedal and would connect with with the prosthetic where your fibia would be.
"So when I jumped into the car, I would simply center my leg with this rod and it would slide right in. In this way, my shoe wouldn't move off of the pedal. To get out, I just ejected myself straight up and the rod would slide out naturally. In addition, because the connection of my leg to the pedal was metal to metal, it eliminated any of the flex that was not ideal.
However, as Zanardi goes on to explain, the system used in Spa was not without its drawbacks. "The problem with my prosthetic legs while driving is the socket of the prosthetic leg fills with perspiration, which then detaches from my skin and I lose my connection with it. So there is this valve designed to expel the accumulation of liquid, which I would have to open and operate through my driving suit while driving down the straight at 175mph!
At 51, Zanardi feels like he is in far better shape today, than he was when driving before his accident. Despite this, the prosthetic legs do require more physical effort, so he feels that liberating himself from them while driving puts him closer to being on an even keel with other drivers. But more than that, Zanardi feels a particular obligation to his co-drivers. They are not on the team to support his efforts. Rather, in his view, they are all part of one effort to win the race, and as such, his desire is that the car must work for all of them in equal measure. That sentiment even extends to the team and to BMW that is supporting his effort to compete at this level.
"Spa was my first experience with endurance racing, and immediately there was a bond with Bruno [below, left] and Timo [below, right], and the whole team. When you share a car other drivers, it makes you look at every team member in a different way and realize how essential everyone is to the success of the effort," says Zanardi.

In that vein, Zanardi says he won't hesitate to forego a stint if he is not on pace with his teammates in his quest to win. "I would never start a race without knowing we haven't done everything we can to be in a position to win," he says. "But, I'm going to do everything I can to be that guy, to have them need me to be the driver to make that gap and go for the win."
If you've followed Zanardi's career closely, then you'll know this attitude is pretty much what sums up the man. His disability is not an impediment, merely a challenge that requires a solution, however unique it may be. And following the Lausitz accident, he acknowledges that life changed, yet he can't say if it was for the better or the worse, just that it changed as it life is wont to do for any us at anytime. He never would have had the opportunity to participate in two Olympic Games, and who knows if we have had the chance to drive in the 2019 Rolex 24 At Daytona. All he knows is that life is a privilege, and he counts himself fortunate to have a life to live.
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This is post #1 continuation......
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Old 11-28-2018, 10:40 PM
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Johnson keen to partner Alonso at Rolex 24
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By: Chris Medland November 26, 2018 9:26 AM Jimmie Johnson says he wants to partner Fernando Alonso at next year’s Rolex 24 At Daytona if the Spaniard secures a seat as expected.Alonso started his final Formula 1 race in Abu Dhabi on Sunday before heading to Bahrain to carry out a car swap with seven-time NASCAR champion Johnson on Monday. After the event, Alonso was asked about his hopes of returning to Daytona in January after making his debut this year, and says he is working on his options.“Yeah, potentially it is possible,” Alonso said. “I think still looking at the options together with McLaren as well. At the end of the day, I am a McLaren driver also next year and as I have said, the full priority is the Indy 500. So we need to accommodate a few things — it is not that I want to go by my own in all the decisions. I want to have the support from everyone.”RACER reported earlier today that Alonso will share the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R with Jordan Taylor and Renger van der Zande for IMSA’s season-opening WeatherTech SportsCar Championship event in January.

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After impressing in his first run in a single-seater car at the Bahrain International Circuit, Johnson says he would be open to some open-wheel racing in future “without a doubt,” specifically highlighting the Rolex 24.“2020 is my last year under contract with Hendrick, and I’ve been approached many times about the Indy 500. I’m not overly excited about those fast ovals, but I think with my status and relationships I could put together some road course races in IndyCar,” Johnson said. “I’d look at anything.
Johnson shared the GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Riley-Chevy Daytona Prototype at Daytona in 2010. (Image by Greg Aleck/LAT)
“I’ve done sports car races in the past, I’ve finished second in the Rolex 24 a couple of times in the prototype division, I’d love to get back to doing that. Anything’s open. I’m far from done, I want to keep driving and hopefully I can find some good opportunities.”When it was put to Johnson that he could potentially join Alonso at the Rolex 24 in January, the 43-year-old admits he would love to partner the two-time F1 champion.“I would go anywhere to run with him in the same car, man! Absolutely. yes! The reason I paused is because I have to convince my wife that I have to be gone a few more weeks to work on it, but I think I can get there.”
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Old 11-28-2018, 10:47 PM
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Old 11-28-2018, 10:55 PM
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Default WTR confirms Alonso, Kobayashi for Rolex 24

WTR confirms Alonso, Kobayashi for Rolex 24

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By: RACER Staff | November 27, 2018 12:21 PM Wayne Taylor Racing has confirmed that Fernando Alonso Kamui Kobayashi will join its Rolex 24 line-up, partnering full-time co-drivers Jordan Taylor and Renger van der Zande in the No.10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R.The addition of Alonso and his World Endurance Championship Toyota stablemate to the line-up leaves out IndyCar veteran Ryan Hunter-Reay, who joined WTR for the 2018 endurance races at Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans and for Road Atlanta in 2017.As RACER previously reported, the 37-year-old Spaniard will get a second shot at winning the 24-hour endurance race after finishing 38th overall in his Rolex 24 debut with United Autosports in 2018.“I am very happy about joining the Konica Minolta Cadillac team and Wayne Taylor Racing to race together at the Rolex 24 At Daytona,” said Alonso, whose confirmed 2019 schedule will also include a return to the Indy 500.“This is undoubtedly one of the greatest races in American and world motorsport. Returning to the United States is always special. The atmosphere created by the fans is unique throughout an incredible weekend. I really hope to fight for the win, as well as having fun and putting a smile on the fans’ faces.More IMSA!

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“I made my debut last year both in endurance races and with these sports car prototypes, as well as on this track. I was left wanting much more after a brake issue ended our hopes of stepping on the podium. After an intense year in which I’ve competed in both Formula 1 and the WEC, I’m really looking forward to 2019 and attempting to conquer one of the most important races in the world. I’m brimming with hunger and desire and I can’t wait for the first race of next season and going out on track to battle with my Konica Minolta Cadillac teammates.”The 32-year-old Kobayashi co-drives Toyota Gazoo Racing’s No. 7 TS050 HYBRID, earning back-to-back wins at the 6 Hours of Fuji and 6 Hours of Shanghai in his third season with the team. Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez sit second in the WEC Super Season standings on the strength of one win and second-place finishes at Spa and Le Mans.“First of all, I would like to thank the Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R team and Wayne Taylor for giving me this wonderful opportunity to race at the historic Daytona 24-hour,” Kobayashi said. “It is one of the most popular endurance races and I am so excited to have my Daytona debut with the 2017-winning team. This will also be my first race in the U.S. and I’m really looking forward to having a good race with the Konica Minolta Cadillac team.”Team owner Wayne Taylor admitted finalizing his 2019 Rolex line-up took “a long time.”“Both Fernando and Kamui are the cream of the crop of world-class driving talent, not only in F1 but as current sports car drivers,” he said. “It’s taken a long time to put this all together and I’d like to thank everybody who made it all happen. Fernando drove at Daytona last year, and it’ll be the first time at the 24-hour for Kamui, who is a superstar driver who will figure it out quickly.“We have plans to integrate both drivers into our program very efficiently and successfully. I’m absolutely ecstatic that we have been able to make this happen, and I can’t wait to get to Daytona.”

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Old 11-28-2018, 11:13 PM
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Zanardi, RLL partnership in the works for Rolex 24

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By: Marshall Pruett November 27, 2018 10:38 AM BMW’s service provider for IMSA’s WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will learn the names of its full-time and endurance event drivers next week during the brand’s traditional revealing of its plans for the following season, and if it includes Alex Zanardi for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, BMW Team RLL co-owner Bobby Rahal won’t be surprised.“Obviously we’re going to be there, but we don’t know who’ll be driving the cars; those decisions are made by BMW, not us,” he told RACER. “It would be really cool to have Alex with us – he’s a good friend – but at this stage, we’re waiting to hear who we’ll have in the M8 GTEs.”

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In December of 2017, BMW announced Zanardi as a driver for its 2019 Rolex 24 effort, and during a recent test at the Miramas circuit in France, the Italian driver learned to use some of the new steering wheel-based controls in a FIA WEC BMW M8 GTE fielded by the MTEK outfit. With RLL having long been viewed as the logical entrant for Zanardi’s Daytona program, it is not anticipated that an additional entry would be required to accommodate him within the team.Although unconfirmed, a dedicated test in the U.S. for Zanardi using an RLL M8 GTE with the new steering wheel controls could also be in the works prior to official Rolex 24 testing in January.
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Old 12-08-2018, 08:59 PM
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Default DragonSpeed expands to two-car Rolex 24 effort

DragonSpeed expands to two-car Rolex 24 effort

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By: Stephen Kilbey | December 4, 2018 9:35 AM American-flagged WEC and ELMS team DragonSpeed has revealed to RACER that it will enter two cars in the 2019 Rolex 24 at Daytona.The second car marks an expansion for team boss Elton Julian, as the team originally planned to enter a single ORECA 07 Gibson. DragonSpeed debuted the current ORECA in the 2017 Rolex 24.The team’s first entry, which was previously confirmed for the Florida endurance classic, will be driven by Nicolas Lapierre, Ben Hanley and Henrik Hedman.

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The second car currently has two confirmed drivers, Roberto Gonzalez and Pastor Maldonado, who are competing together full-time in the FIA WEC ‘Super Season’ in the LMP2 class.The news means that a trio of European-based ORECAs look set to join the Daytona race for what will be the first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race with the DPi and LMP2 teams racing in different classes. The third European LMP2 comes from RLR MSport; the team told RACER earlier this year that they intend to run in 2019 with its newly acquired ORECA Gibson.
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Old 12-08-2018, 09:27 PM
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JDC announces Cadillac DPi drivers

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By: Marshall Pruett December 5, 2018 10:33 AM The JDC-Miller Motorsports team will return in 2019 with two new Cadillac DPi-V.Rs and a number of new drivers to wage its efforts to secure an IMSA championship.The Minnesota-based team has also shuffled some of its existing drivers to fill the No. 84 Cadillac which will have 2018 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race-winner Stephen Simpson and Simon Trummer in the car for the full season. The duo will have Chris Miller on board for the endurance events, and Mazda Road To Indy veteran Juan Piedrahita will complete its Rolex 24 at Daytona lineup.

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JDC’s use of the No. 84, rather than No. 99 as seen last season, comes in the wake of former sponsor GAINSCO opting to withdraw from all racing activities.With Trummer slotting in alongside Simpson, JDC’s Misha Goikhberg has moved to the No. 85 where he’ll have former Spirit of Daytona Cadillac DPi driver Tristan Vautier as his new season-long teammate. For the Rolex 24, the two will have Formula 1 iron man Rubens Barrichello making his first appearance with JDC, and Devlin DeFrancesco, who contested two round with the team last year, taking the final roster position.After Daytona, Piedrahita will move into the third-driver role at the remaining endurance rounds in the No. 85.“We are very excited about our driver roster for the Rolex 24 and the whole season,” said JDC-Miller MotorSports team owner John Church. “We announced our purchase of the Cadillacs in September. We’ve been working steadily all fall to put together a stealth group of drivers to compete for race wins in 2019. Chris, Misha, Stephen and Simon were very competitive last year.“Devlin had two great runs with us in 2018, and Juan and Tristan have raced with us in the past as they developed their driving careers. It’s great to welcome all of them back. Last, but certainly not least, we’re thrilled to welcome Rubens to the team. It’s an honor for us, it’s a great opportunity for our team and we look forward to providing him with a very competitive effort.” Simpson, who emerged as one of IMSA’s breakout stars in recent years, welcomes the changes.“I am very excited to have Simon as my team mate for the new season,” he said. “Simon had some very strong performances in his debut season in IMSA and showed his potential. We get along very well, we have good chemistry and I am looking forward to getting to work. It will be great to have Juan join us for the Rolex 24 in the No. 84. I have known Juan for a handful of years and was previously his coach when he raced in Indy Lights. I know he is going to be a strong addition. Additionally, I am very happy to be continuing to share the car with Chris for the long races. Chris is quick and a great teammate. This will be our sixth season driving together in the long races, we will both miss Misha but are excited for the whole team and driver pairings.” JDC’s highest profile driver is looking forward to having a solid shot at winning his first Rolex 24.“I am super excited to compete in the Rolex 24 again, I love this race,” Barrichello said. “In fact, I love the series and I almost won the Rolex 24 once with the Taylor brothers. I know JDC-Miller had a good event last year with sixth place, so I hope we can really enjoy our weekend and give our best for the best possible position. I am really excited, and I can’t wait for it!”
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Old 12-09-2018, 12:59 AM
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Juncos adds Argentina's Canapino to Rolex 24 lineup

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By: RACER Staff | December 5, 2018 5:49 PM Juncos Racing has finalized its Rolex 24 lineup by adding Argentinian ace Agustin Canapino to drive the No. 50 Cadillac DPi-V.R entry. He will join Kyle Kaiser, Will Owen and Rene Binder in the team’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship debut.The 28-year-old Canapino is the winningest active driver in Argentina with 12 championships in the past 11 years. He has recorded 81 race wins across several series, including the Top Race Championship, the 2018 Campeonato Subamericano y Argentino del Super TC2000, and the Turismo Carretera Argentina Championship, of which he is the defending series champion.“I am very grateful for Carlos Zarlenga, Jorge Maiquez, and all of General Motors Mercosur, along with my sponsors YPF, Banco Patagonia, and Hector Martinez Sosa,” said Canapino. “These people have given me the opportunity for the biggest challenge of my career. I will give my 100% every time I am behind the wheel of the Cadillac DPi and I am very excited to have the chance to race in one of the biggest races in the world, the 24 Hours of Daytona.

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“I would like to thank Ricardo Juncos for giving me the opportunity to join his team and to all of Juncos Racing for the hard work they have put into the build of their new DPi. I am ready to get on track this week as we begin testing.”Said team owner Ricardo Juncos, “We are very happy to complete our Rolex 24 line-up with a great driver like Agustin Canapino,” said Juncos. “He is a very dedicated and passionate man, competing almost every weekend of the year in a race, and is one of the top drivers in Argentina. We are looking forward opportunity and to this new adventure with Agustin. We will be working very hard as we face this new challenge as a rookie team competing in the highest level of the IMSA series. I want to thank Agustin Canapino, Jorge Maiquez and Carlos Zarlenga, CEO of General Motors Mercosur for this opportunity in joining our team for this prestigious event in the IMSA championship.”
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Old 12-11-2018, 09:39 PM
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Default Meyer Shank sets two-car GTD lineup with Hindman, Farnbacher

Meyer Shank sets two-car GTD lineup with Hindman, Farnbacher

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By: Marshall Pruett | 14 hours ago With its all-female No. 57 Acura NSX GT3 lineup previously confirmed, Meyer Shank Racing will complete its two-car IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GT Daytona effort with Trent Hindman and Mario Farnbacher in the No. 86 entry.MSR veterans AJ Allmendinger and Justin Marks will join the team for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, with Marks staying on for the three remaining Michelin Endurance Cup rounds after January’s season opener.

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“It’s been five years of scrapping in GS, Super Trofeo, and various other categories to finally be in a position to run in the IMSA WeatherTech Championship full time,” said Hindman who, like Farnbacher, shifts from an endurance role with the team last season to full-time status.“This is absolutely a dream come true and I owe the world to Mike [Shank] and the entire Meyer Shank Racing team for the opportunity of a lifetime. This is a team that I’ve come to grow very close with in my role in the endurance races in 2018. Now, seeing where we will be in 2019, makes me even more grateful to be working with this group. I am honored and I am thankful to be driving an MSR prepared Acura NSX GT3 Evo for 2019 in phenomenal company.”Farnbacher added: “I am super happy to be back with MSR and then to drive the full season is a mega bonus. I am so happy and thankful for this opportunity. The Acura NSX GT3 is a great platform, and I am convinced the Evo will be a really competitive ride for 2019. I will definitely do my best, like I always do, to be successful in 2019 with MSR and my teammates and I can’t wait for the season to start.”Having two confirmed Acura entries for every round is a point of pride for Shank.“We are happy to continue with the Acura program and the new Evo improvements have shown well at our tests,” he said. “There’s a sense of ease having both of our cars go full season from the start. Both Mario and Trent really impressed me last year. Being a third driver is a difficult thing and they both knocked it out of the park so I’m happy to have them come back for the full season. It’s also great to have Justin back for the endurance races and of course I am always honored to have AJ race in my cars. He’s part of the MSR family and we will always have a seat ready for him.”
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Alonso, Kobayashi 'willing to work hard' for Rolex win - Taylor

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By: J.J. O'Malley 10 hours ago Jordan Taylor admits that having Formula 1 and World Endurance Championship veterans Fernando Alonso and Kamui Kobayashi as co-drivers for the 2019 Rolex 24 At Daytona will bring plenty of media attention to the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R he shares with Renger van der Zande.However, that was not the main reason they’re in the lineup.“We wanted them because they want to win the race, just like we do,” Taylor said. “They want to win that Rolex, and they’re willing to work hard to do it. I think it’s a pretty strong lineup.”

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Taylor ran solo in the No. 10 Cadillac on Tuesday for the Michelin tire test at Daytona International Speedway, which saw cars from all four IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship classes in addition to representatives from the Michelin Pilot Challenge and Prototype Challenge series. The test was held in un-Florida-like conditions, with temperatures dipping into the 40s.“Daytona is a very unique track, so whenever you can get track time here, you try to make the most of it,” Taylor said. “We’re trying to run as many miles as we can do on Michelin tires to learn what it takes to make that tire perform at its best to prepare for the Rolex. It’s our Super Bowl of the year. You want to get the car right for this race. We’ll do a lot of long runs later today on the car to see how the tire drops off, and the team will keep making little setup adjustments to extract the best out of the tire.” To maximize the test, the team opted to go with one driver to best learn how the car reacted to the new tire.“We wanted to go with one driver to run through our plan,” Taylor said. “That way, you can make back-to-back changes all day to see how the car’s changing. It’s a lot different going to Michelin, and we’re seeing how the car adjusts to the new tires. The other guys will come in for the Roar (January 4-6). They’re all professionals; they’ll come up to speed.”
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May 13, JUN 8, Jul 13, 2019: All Cars Every 2nd Saturday Free Breakfast click: https://www.tamparacing.com/forums/e...ast-tampa.html

AND Every Saturday: Dunedin Gearheads car meet click: https://www.tamparacing.com/forums/e...ml#post9408927

Tampa Racing.com covers the Tampa car scene and supports many fund raisers, worthy causes and events that enrich our community. We hope you enjoy them all.
What do I do? ---- on-site *Aftermarket* spring/suspension installations --- on-site impact wrenching---street lowering with your own stock springs...........True Bi-xenon HID projector headlight conversions........ Much more at Bob's Garage!
https://www.tamparacing.com/forums/b...ontact-us.html

Have a great day! [email protected] and 813-839-4281 (24 hrs)
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