There is more and more gray hair in his hair, but no matter how old he is 45, he continues to enjoy the adrenaline of being in the passenger compartment of his car, accelerating wildly in search of more and more victories. This is Juan Pablo Montoya, the most important pilot in the country’s history, who will be out on Saturday (3:40 PM, with Fox Sports 3 in four blocks of three hours), in search of his fourth title in 24 Hours of Daytona.
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Now with the team Mayer Shank Race, And with Olivier Bla, Dane Cameron, his longtime IMSA racing partner with Penske, and NASCAR man AJ Allmendinger, he will attempt another victory in a circuit he knows as if it were his Car park.
In an interview with TimeMontoya, winner in 2007, 2008 and 2013, talked about what this test is.
How do you analyze 2021 for you with new challenges?
The truth is, the new challenges are very interesting. I think it’s a special year, because I’m going to run all the races one could dream of going. I’ll run the Indianapolis 500 and run 24 hours at Daytona and Le Mans. We hope it will be a good year.
How does motorsport live amid this epidemic?
The truth was affected a lot by the fans, who were unable to go to the slopes, although it opens here in the United States a little, but it is very limited. The difference part differs slightly, since there are no direct drivers’ meetings. A lot of these things have changed, but one has to deal with what is there.
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How is the car?
It’s complicated, because we are four drivers, so none of them have had much time to drive. The two full-time drivers have turned a little more than us. But well the car had some things that we needed to improve that were changed and improved upon. I feel like we’re going to be very competitive this weekend.
What do you think will be the strongest competitor?
The strongest competitors, without a doubt, are Cadillacs. They are cars that adapt well to this path, they are very powerful and complicate our lives a little, but we hope that it goes well and that it has a good weekend. You still have to run and see how competitive we are and see what opportunities are there. The car still has to score good championship points with the full-time drivers.
Are you seen as a favorite?
The chances of winning are very high. In the last couple of years the car has been pretty fast but we’ve had mechanical malfunctions, really ridiculous. So if we can get into a race in which the car does not fail or have no problems, the result is good. That’s always the million-dollar question: “What will happen during the race?” This added to the possibility that something would fail, if all survived, and accordingly one looks at what his goal is.
Mistakes can eliminate a profession …
We have been very strong in practice, but you have to see when the race starts who shows what. The 24-hour race is difficult, because the track changes a lot, there are bugs and other things affect. The temperature was very cold, this Saturday (today) looks cold as well, but Sunday (tomorrow) it will be a little warm. We have to wait for what the path brings us. That team has also been with Acura, but with the NSX and now they’re with the prototype, learning a lot, pit stops. You have to reduce mistakes rather than do things right. One mistake costs like doing 15 things right.
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What strategy did they design?
They have planned me to finish my degree, but that always changes. They tell you we’re going to do three or four shifts, but if we’re too hungover or lack some speed and someone is going faster, they ride it and put on it many hours. If it goes as planned, I drive for about six or seven hours, but I always end up driving about 10 hours.
Flip FilmMizar M.
EL TIEMPO Editor
And Twitter: @ FelipeVilla4
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