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RX-8 Leads GT Pack At Grand-Am Daytona-24 Hour Test Days
Submitted by Berny Herrera on Monday, January 7, 2008 - 3:16pm

Motorsport.Com reports that a total of 39 GT cars took to the Daytona high banks for the three-day test, with the No. 30 Racers Edge Motorsports Mazda RX-8 posting the quickest time. Seventeen-year-old Robert Thorne set the quick lap of 1:50.617 in the rotary-powered entry. Thorne shares the car with Ken Dobson and Bob and Jim Michaelian.

Second quickest overall, and over one-half a second slower than the RX-8 was the No. 15 Blackforest Motorsports Ford Mustang Cobra GT of Tom Nastasi, David Empringham and Jean-Francois Dumoulin. Boris Said, who will be the team’s fourth driver in the Rolex 24, was not present at the test.




#30 Racers Edge Motorsports Mazda RX-8: Ken Dobson, Bob Michaelian, Jim Michaelian. Photo by John Dunagan - Fastlines.

The No. 70 SpeedSource Mazda RX-8 of David Haskell, Sylvain Tremblay, Nick Ham and Raphael Matos posted the seventh-best time in class, just seven-tenths slower than the Racers Edge RX-8. The team will unveil its 2008 sponsor at the North American International Auto Show at Detroit next Monday.

Another Mazda showing early speed was the No. 40 Hyper Sport RX-8, which was ninth. Joe Foster and Charles Espenlaub will team with TV star Patrick Dempsey, who will be making his Rolex 24 debut.

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subject:
SpeedSource and more...
author:
date:
January 7, 2008 - 9:17pm
Sylvain Tremblay turned the GT class fastest lap on Sunday in the No. 70 SpeedSource Mazdaspeed Mazda RX-8, posting a time of 1:51.462 (114.981 mph). Tremblay, also the team principal, will drive the No. 70 machine with David Haskell, Nick Ham and Raphael Matos.

"We had a pretty good game plan coming in," Tremblay said. "We stuck to that game plan, but luckily all of the Mazdas went fast - not just us. I'm just really proud of the effort put forth by the entire SpeedSource MazdaSpeed team."

Tremblay also said the SpeedSource machines will have a distinct, new look for the Rolex 24.

"We have a pretty significant press announcement at the Detroit International Auto Show next Monday that will announce our new partner in the Grand-Am Rolex Series with Mazda," the SpeedSource boss said. "It's a big-time sponsor, and we're really proud of what it will mean to us and how our cars will look."

Seventeen-year-old Robert Thorne was among those "other" fast Mazda RX-8 machines. Thorne posted the fastest GT time of the weekend on in the No. 30 Racer's Edge Motorsports Guardian Edge Technologies Mazda RX-8 Saturday afternoon, taking advantage of the draft on Daytona's banking and a lightning-fast trip through the infield section to post a time of 1:50.617 (115.859 mph).
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subject:
ROLEX JANUARY TEST DAYS
author:
date:
January 7, 2008 - 6:11pm
Submitted by FRANCISP on Monday, January 7, 2008 - 2:17am

With only three weeks to go to the 24 hrs. of Daytona,
the RX-8s; I believe, were totally successful and impressive
at the Jan. test days this past weekend.
SpeedSource ended up with the fastest time on Sunday with
a 1:51.462 lap @ 114.981 mph. in the GT class.

The fastest weekend time in the GT class belongs
to a 17 year old Robert Thorne in the #30 RX-8 with
a lap time of 1:50.617 @ over 115 mph.

Except for the Goldin Brothers, all the RX-8s were at some time
near the top of their class; things look good for Mazda this year
in Daytona. This year there will be more bullets in the gun with
six RX-8s on the entry list increasing the chance for a win in
the GT class, especially with endurance as one of the 3 Rotor's
strengths.

The Rolex 24 Hr. race starts Sat. Jan 26; a great deal of
it will be covered live on Speed TV.

Get your beer ready. Oh yeah ladies, Patrick Dempsey will
be driving an RX-8 in this years event and their team is
no back-marker.
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subject:
Great news
author:
date:
January 7, 2008 - 4:24pm
Looks to be a stellar season with all the new RX-8's in the running. Can't wait.
Good Luck To All!
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