Paul Di Resta is no stranger to rubbing elbows with racing’s elite. But as he prepares for his first sports car race in America, the Scot admits his Roar Before the 24 experience has been a little intimidating.
“It was a bit daunting going into the briefing room and seeing how many drivers are actually here,” he said. “Obviously a great amount of drivers coming over from Europe just for this race that I know; equally some guys that I’ve watched on TV, racing against the likes of Dario, Marino over the years. And even over the world, it’s new to me.
“It’s interesting to sit in an engineering debrief and have four different opinions and you have to put that to use and somewhere you have to compromise. I’m quite an easygoing guy sometimes, don’t tell my wife that. I’m just looking forward to getting this test over and done with and more importantly coming here to race, getting the ol’ boys out and really see what sports car racing’s about.”
As for cousins Dario and Marino Franchitti, Di Resta admitted he hadn’t chatted with them about Daytona’s high banks.
“I haven’t actually chatted about this track in particular,” he said. “I think the best thing you can do here is come in with a very open mind. I’m experienced enough, being nearly 32, a bit long in the tooth at this game now, especially when you’ve got young guys like Lando Norris alongside who’s not even 18 yet. You have to give them an idea, and of course there’s tricks to the trade around here, and that’s everything you need to try and learn.”