Paul Fix will give the Ave-Riley AR-2 its competition debut in this week’s IMSA Prototype Challenge presented by Mazda season-opener at Sebring, as part of a full-season effort planned for the Trans-Am ace.
The new LMP3 car will join other entry level prototypes from Onroak Automotive (Ligier JS P3), Ginetta and Norma in the new-look series, which will run as a support race to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
Fix is listed in the No. 44 car, entered by Ave Motorsports, for the pair of 45-minute races at Sebring.
“We are all looking forward to getting on track and experiencing prototype racing in North America,” Fix said. “I know that from previous experience, the entire Tony Ave Racing team is behind this endeavor 110 percent.”
Fix and the team, along with the majority of Prototype Challenge series competitors, are coming off a two-day test at Sebring last week, which saw the new Kelly Moss Norma M30 of Colin Thompson top the time charts.
The Ave-Riley set the 12th quickest time in class, some eight seconds off Thompson’s 1:58.021 lap time.
“The car is both fast and a pleasure to drive,” Fix said. “I expect we should be on pace for the season of racing.
“Past experience at various tracks on the schedule will allow us to get a good setup under the car and be in a competitive posture from the moment we unload the transporters.”
Ave added: “Paul drove our works Trans Am cars for the past three seasons and played a large part in helping develop the car to its current point of success in that series.
“I expect him to lead us in this endeavor in the same fashion.”