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Grand-Am Rolex Series: Rolex 24 at Daytona

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Sports/Touring Car Racing Topics:  Rolex 24 at Daytona

Grand-Am Rolex Series: Rolex 24 at Daytona

Sascha Maassen
Phillip Martien
Patrick Pilet
B.J. Zacharias
January 25, 2009


DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA

J.J. O'MALLEY: Our 3rd place finishers. Phillip Martien, I understand you'll be running with us throughout the season with Wright Motorsports. Happy birthday. Your thoughts today.
PHILLIP MARTIEN: A dream come true. It was my birthday present. I was 50 years old this week. I decided instead of buying a 1959 Baldo, I would put a team together and do the first 24 hours of Daytona. And I'm a real rookie because I started pro racing in the World Challenge last year.
I took one of the great team, the best team in the U.S. with Wright Motorsports and John Wright with a winning car, and we asked Porsche Motorsports for help to get some drivers. We asked for one, and they gave us two, and this is incredible. I want to thank Porsche Motorsports to give us a chance to have Sascha and Patrick with us. Gave us a strong team.
And, of course, Wright Motorsports includes B.J. Zacharias that's well known in the sport. And I had a wonderful team with me. And I could not ask better for my birthday. It's the best day of my life today. Thank you.
J.J. O'MALLEY: B.J. Zacharias, I know John Wright has been here. This is his 16th Rolex 24. But he's always been behind the scenes, even though he's taken a bunch of podiums. How was the team together, and how was your feeling to finish on the podium on the Rolex 24 as an independent team?
B.J. ZACHARIAS: That's probably one of the toughest things is the battle, Farnbacher Loles and TRG, both very good teams. There's some advantages running multiple car teams. But there's also some disadvantages sometimes.
And I think we're kind of like the little team that could. We had a great car. We had a great driver lineup. And Phillip did an excellent job. And I just more really want to thank the team for putting this all together and Phillip for the opportunity. And these guys were not only great co-drivers, but just good to hang around. So I really appreciate it.
J.J. O'MALLEY: Phillip said there were two factory drivers, Patrick Pilet, Wright Motorsports puts the team together. How was it to drive for them here at the Rolex 24?
PATRICK PILET: It was fantastic. John Wright called me, I think, in December to join the team. And I accept immediately because I know John from last year, I was playing Leman. And for sure he makes a real good job of the mechanic array, good job because all the pit stops are perfect.
We have a little problem on the car during the race, we have only 90 percent of the throttle, but the car was still very consistent during all the things, and I would just like to thank Phillip for giving me the opportunity and I hope to be here next year maybe for the win.
J.J. O'MALLEY: Sascha Maassen, you've been with the Rolex series a number of times, including with Brumos. Your thoughts on today's race.
SASCHA MAASSEN: I'm happy for Brumos, of course, because I joined him quite often. I'm happy for us as well. When we entered the race, we had a plan. We said we want to finish this race. And I thought this is already difficult, because it's not easy.
And Phillip has never done a 24-hour race. And I have to say to him that I am really, really happy about the performance, because he did exactly what is difficult. He did no mistake. We all did no mistakes. And that's what the result is, then. Because you can only finish a race in a good way if you don't do mistakes. And 24 hours for drivers, great crew and no mistakes, and that's the result for us. Thank you very much, everybody, from the team.
J.J. O'MALLEY: Congratulations.



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