IMSA Spotlight: Michael Shank
Owner, No. 60 Michael Shank Racing Ligier JS P2 Honda
How has it been to work with Honda Performance Development?
“Working with HPD has been very good. What I appreciate about them is that they want to win as badly as I do. We are very similar in our approach to racing which helps a lot when things get tough.
“Their culture there is to attack every situation with a main plan and a backup plan and that is exactly how I look at racing across the board.
“Lastly, the way of life at HPD creates loyalty which I truly appreciate and try to live by.”
Your team was the class of the field at Daytona. Have you been able to identify the problem that ended your Daytona run and make corrections for Sebring?
“Yes we felt, for sure, we were in a very, very good position at Daytona. The car and execution of the race were positioned perfectly.
“HPD has identified the issues and yes the correction will be in both HPD powered cars for Sebring. HPD has reacted very quickly to make sure our motors are ready for a very tough 12 Hours of Sebring.”
Does ESM’s win and your pace give you confidence heading into Sebring?
“We feel good about where we are for Sebring. IMSA has taken boost away twice from us since the Daytona 24 so I am concerned about our raceability with the DPs.
“I am afraid they have taken us back to where we were in 2015. Our single biggest issue is never a single lap pace its always being able to race the DPs. We simply do not have the torque.”
Has making the switch to a P2 been a benefit for you looking ahead to 2017? Do you feel you might have a slight advantage over teams still in a DP?
“Without question the move to P2 cars for sure was the correct thing to do. Onroak Automotive is a fantastic group of people that deserve all the wins they get all over the world.
“I do feel that we have a very slight advantage changing early to the P2 platform.
“As an example, one of the items we can have on a P2 car is a third spring. Dealing with the third, working with this new option, especially on our bumpy circuits here is probably a bit of an advantage.
“Really all the U.S. teams are very good and will figure it out very quickly.
When you aren’t at a race track, what do you like to do in your spare time?
“I love lake life and surfing behind my boat. If we are not racing you will find me on a boat loving life and being grateful.”