TAVARES, Fla. - The Heart of Racing drivers Mario Farnbacher (Germany), Ian James (Phoenix) and Alex Riberas (Spain) are ready for the IMSA WeatherTech Championship Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida to run this weekend, March 16-19.
The Heart of Racing team is heading to central Florida with a strong record at the 3.7-mile, 17-turn Sebring International Raceway. In 2014 they were third and last year the trio won the GTD class in their Alex Job Racing prepared Porsche. Farnbacher, James and Riberas are motivated to give Alex Job Racing an 11th Sebring win.
"We won Sebring last year, but that is in the past," Farnbacher said. "Last year's win was amazing, but we are focused on this weekend. I am guessing the traffic situation will be big again this year. The PC GTLM and GTD cars are much closer together on pace than last year. Rule number one, stay out of trouble, be around for the last two hours and go for a second win."
James and the team have one goal.
"The expectation is to win to be honest after being on the podium the last two years the pressure is on to keep the steak alive," James said. "We need to manage our car as there is high risk of on track incidents especially after the GT3 cars are a lot closer in performance to other classes. I have won at Sebring four times, so it really has been a great track for me over the years."
Riberas has confidence in his teammates and the Alex Job Racing crew.
"Ian, Mario and myself have raced together at Sebring twice and both times we finished on the podium," Riberas said. "This definitely gives you confidence and the feeling that you and the team knows how to prepare and run Sebring. As a driver you need to be ready for two things, the heat and the bumps. Sebring is usually very humid and when the sun is shining it gets extremely hot in the car. The main issue for drivers is the back pain produced by the bumpy sections of this track. But we survived well last year, so I'm confident we can do it again. Last year as soon as Mario took the checkered flag and we won the race I wanted to scream and celebrate, but I found myself with nothing left. I totally lost my voice. It didn't come back until a few days later. As you can imagine, the post-race press conference was quite funny."
"We are coming in as the defending race winners," said Alex Job, team owner. "There is no real pressure as everything has changed since last year. Everyone has new cars and it will be interesting to see who can prepare their car to go the distance at one the most challenging sports car races in the world."
The Heart of Racing accepts donations and pledges for Seattle Children's Hospital at teamseattle.com.
Follow the action from the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Sebring on IMSA.com, IMSA Radio and on television on March 16 at 7 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 2, on March 17 at 12 a.m. on FOX Sports 1 continuing at 2 p.m. on FOX Sports 1.
The Heart of Racing
Founded in 1996, by Don and Donna Kitch, Team Seattle and The Heart of Racing is a group of sports car road racing fans, drivers, and corporate partners making a difference in our community by combining two passions: A love of motorsports and a commitment to Seattle Children's Hospital and pediatric cardiac health care nationally. The team uses the promotion and exposure of the racing program to fund raise and increase awareness of the financial needs for quality pediatric medical care. Since inception, Team Seattle has generated over $5.5 million for their cause. The Heart of Racing accepts donations and pledges for Seattle Children's Hospital at teamseattle.com.
Alex Job Racing
Alex Job Racing is one of the most successful teams in sports car racing with 70 wins (since 1995); including two Rolex 24 GT Class wins in 1999 and 2013. This record is supported by 48 pole positions and 106 podium finishes. The team has won five championships (GTC 2013, 2012, GT in 2004, 2003 and 2002) complimented by their two GT class wins at Le Mans. The team also boasts ten Sebring 12-hour wins.
IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTD (GT Daytona) Class is made up of some the world's most sophisticated cars, including the Porsche 911 GT3 R, Ferrari 488 GTB, Lamborghini Huracan, Aston Martin DB9, BMW M6, Viper SRT and Audi R8 LMS. All GTD Class cars run on the spec Continental tire.