Henri Zogaib and Ryan Dalziel will team up for Samax Motorsport for round two of the Rolex Sports Car Series season, the GAINSCO Grand Prix at Homestead Miami Speedway next weekend.
Although Zogaib and Dalziel have already had the chance to work together and get used to the new package during two days of testing at the end of February, the Homestead event will be the Rolex race debut for the pairing, who will also be utilising a new powerplant as Samax moves to a Dinan-prepared BMW, which will be mated to the team's regular Riley chassis.
“I'm really looking forward to the Homestead race weekend and happy to have Ryan as my co-driver,” Zogaib said. “I feel very confident racing on this track and Ryan is, of course, right on his game. The new BMW motor is fantastic too, and things went really well in testing. The whole Samax team has been working really well together, so we're optimistic about this race weekend.”
The Homestead weekend is a bit of a homecoming for Samax, which is based just over an hour to the north, in Pompano Beach. After motor problems prevented the team from finishing the Rolex 24, it is looking to regain the form that saw it finish fourth in the 2007 Homestead event.
“We were pretty disappointed with how things played out for us at the 24 and not being able to make that podium again, but moving to BMW power has gone smoothly, and we are looking forward to getting back to racing at Homestead with Henri and Ryan,” said team principal Peter Baron. “Things went well during our test with the BMW, and we think Henri and Ryan are going to be a strong pairing.”
Dalziel has made headlines throughout his career, taking wins in a range of categories after jumping up from karts in Europe to finish his rookie season of British Formula Renault as runner-up to one Kimi Raikkonen. The Scot was also part of the Samax driver line-up that finished second in last year's Rolex 24 at Daytona, and scored a GT class pole for Samax the last time he raced for the team at Homestead, in 2005.
“I think this BMW-Riley is going to be a strong combination at Homestead, as it won the race last year and we felt like we made a lot of progress together during the test,” Dalziel reasoned. "I'm really happy to have this opportunity to race in the Rolex Series again, because it's incredibly close racing and the driver makes a huge difference.
"This team has really regrouped after Daytona and I think Peter is putting right people in place, so we are going to be well-aligned to take the fight for the win.”
The team will announce sponsors for the programme in the near future.