DG-Spec and Scion Make Return to Endurance Racing
Drivers Dan Gardner and Scott Webb Reunite to Chase WERC Championship and 25-Hour Win
LONG BEACH, Calif - After having won everything possible in World Challenge's Touring Car division in 2010, Scion and DG-Spec have decided to make a return to endurance racing. The team looks to repeat on the Western Endurance Racing Championship title they won in 2009, but the major push for this season will be to try to capture the win at North America's longest road race, the 25 Hours of Thunderhill.
"We've raced about everywhere you can race a production-based car like our Scion, but there is one thing we haven't yet attempted," said team owner, Dan Gardner. "The 25 Hours of Thunderhill is the most grueling testament to a team's and car's durability and performance. Cars from literally every pro and club series come to compete, and a win at the 25 is one of the most prestigious things you can accomplish as a road racer."
The WERC series will be a good test bed, as the team attempts to learn everything they can en route to the 25-Hour, which takes place in early December. The eight-race series will allow the team to optimize lighting, fuel economy, pit stop strategy, tire strategy, and myriad other elements critical to success at a race that doesn't stop for 25 hours straight.
"It's fantastic to have the DG-Spec team back," said NASA National Chairman, Ryan Flaherty. "We are thrilled Scion has decided to run the WERC series and the 25-Hour. As always, competition will be fierce, but I know that suits Dan and his team just fine."
In 2009 the team won every WERC race save one, with Gardner and Webb at the wheel. The dominant performance had the DG-Spec Scion team earning more points than any other team in any class.
"It was one heckuva run a couple years back...one of the best seasons I've ever had," said Webb. "Anyone who knows Dan knows he runs a tight ship, with great strategy and extremely well-prepared cars. I'm really excited to be driving for the DG-Spec Scion team again."
The team has rebuilt the old faithful 18 car to take on the endurance format once again. Car number 18 has won championships in World Challenge, Performance Touring, and WERC, and will take to the track with four brutally hard seasons already on its clock.
The world-class crew of Sean Morris, David Fredrickson, Aidan Spraic, and Shawn Meze will be handling car prep and pit-stop duties. The crew will play a critical role, as dozens of stops will occur in just the 25-Hour alone. Their teamwork will be a hallmark of the effort.
"Scion is a brand that is always looking to do things differently," said Steve Hatanaka, Scion auto shows and special events manager. "I'm excited to push an extremely authentic, relatively showroom-stock Scion all the way to its limits. There are no aero mods, no suspension relocation, no aftermarket engine internals...just a car that started its life as a true retail unit. What better way to prove ourselves than through extreme endurance racing, and what better test-bed than the longest race in North America."
The team has its first race this coming weekend during the first round of the WERC series on Saturday, April 9 at Buttonwillow Raceway Park. The race is a three-hour enduro that takes place almost entirely under cover of darkness, as it begins at 7 p.m.