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SDR to Miss Long Beach Due to Sebring Accident Damage

Spirit of Daytona withdraws from Long Beach due to Sebring accident damage…

Photo: IMSA

Spirit of Daytona will miss next month’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship round at Long Beach due to accident damage sustained in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

Tristan Vautier, who claimed pole for the race, made heavy contact with the Turn 17 barriers in the closing stages of the race, resulting in significant damage to the team’s Cadillac DPi-V.R.

A team statement released late Friday indicated the Troy Flis-led operation will skip the April 13-14 will skip the race to “regroup” and prepare for its return to IMSA competition at an undisclosed date.

Vautier and Matt McMurry were due to drive the Dallara-built car.

“Sebring was an emotional rollercoaster ride for us,” Flis said. “We knew that we had the right combination for success, so taking the pole confirmed our confidence in this package.

“Unfortunately, racing provides the highest of highs and lowest of lows and at Sebring we experienced both.

“We are most thankful that Tristan was not injured in the crash.

“Our Cadillac did its job of protecting the driver but unfortunately the amount of damage to the car is extensive.

“Unfortunately, due to several circumstances we will not be able to attend the Long Beach event in April but we will regroup, rebuild and come back stronger than ever.”

It will mark the second consecutive time the team has missed the Long Beach race, after a weekend-ending accident in practice last year with its Riley Mk. 30 Gibson LMP2 car, which sustained tub damage.

No word has been given whether Spirit of Daytona will return in time for the following WeatherTech Championship round at Mid-Ohio on May 4-6 or whether its hiatus may be prolonged.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John


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