Race: 57th Running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona
Saturday, Jan. 26th Sunday, Jan. 27th
1:00-5:00PM NBCSN 3:00-6:00AM NBCSN App
5:00-9:00PM NBCSN App 6:00-3:00PM NBCSN
No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) Acura NSX GT3 Evo: Katherine Legge, Bia Figueiredo (Ana Beatriz), Simona De Silvestro, Christina Nielsen
Heinricher Racing w/ MSR Meet the Team / Media Availability:
Friday, January 25th at 2:00PM in the DIS Media Center Press Conference Room
MSR Rolex 24 Fast Facts
Heinricher Racing Brings All-Female Driver Line Up to the Rolex
Heinricher Racing and Caterpillar program leader, Jackie Heinricher has made her dream become a reality with the all-female-pairing for the 2019 season for the No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ MSR Acura NSX GT3 Evo. Her plans to kick off the season as driver at the Rolex 24 were put to the side as she was forced to sit out due to a back injury. Despite not being in the seat herself, the successful entrepreneur continues to be the face of the Heinricher Racing and Caterpillar effort for the 24 hour long event and 2019 season. Her decision to seek MSR was a simple one to reach based on the strong history of performance led by Mike Shank and his team. By partnering with MSR, Heinricher is excited to see success on the track this weekend.
“My role will be making sure the drivers know they have my support,” said Heinricher. “A winning team can be summed up in six words; ‘we simply believe in one another.’ I continue the great work with the Heinricher Racing and Caterpillar partnership. As a team of drivers, it’s an honor to be role models on and off the track. Through our effort we bring diversity to the track, ensuring that in our professions, the more diverse our global teams whether in racing or business, the better positioned we are to serve those we inspire. I’m very proud of what the Heinricher Racing team has accomplished in such a short period of time and can’t wait to continue this hard work at the Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona and beyond.”
25 Years in the Making:
It has been 25 years since the Rolex 24 At Daytona saw an all-female entry into the iconic event. Linda Pobst, Kat Teasdale, Margy Eatwell, Tami Rai Busby and Leigh O’Brien combined to drive onboard a Chevy Camaro in the GTs Class of the Exxon World Sports Car Series. The five powerhouses combined for a historical moment for the 1994 Rolex 24 At Daytona. Fast forward 25 years and Heinricher Racing w/ Meyer Shank Racing team has once again created a star studded line up of talented females to take on the 57th running of the Rolex 24.
The initiative has several goals for off the track, but the core ambition is to deliver results. With his record of success at the track, team owner Mike Shank is convinced that the driver roster for the 57 entry is one that can deliver.
“We are really fortunate to have such a strong line up of drivers in the No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ Meyer Shank Racing Acura,” said Mike Shank. “They’ve all accomplished a lot in the sport and in so many different areas from IndyCar to V8 Supercars to Stock Cars. I think it would be a mistake to underestimate what they are capable of. We’ve seen how important teamwork is in this race so I think we have got a really good package and just need to execute for the first 20 hours and be ready to race to the finish on Sunday.”
Katherine Legge, No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ MSR Acura NSX GT3 Evo:
Legge will be making her third full season start with MSR and the Acura NSX GT3 and she is definitely not a stranger to the Rolex 24. 2019 will mark her sixth Rolex 24 start after competing in various forms of machinery including Daytona Prototypes, Prototypes and GT cars. Her best finish was with MSR last year where she finished 2nd in the GTD class.
“There is definitely a little bit of pressure because we have a fantastic team, a great car and a fab driver line up,” said Legge. “If I can impart my knowledge of driving this car and its idiosyncrasies, and give them as much info as possible, we can and will be successful. There is a deep seated respect between us [Bia, Simona, Christina, Jackie]. There are very few good female drivers in the world, and we managed to put them all in one car.”
Christina Nielsen, No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ MSR Acura NSX GT3 Evo:
Nielsen will be making her sixth appearance at the Rolex 24 as she subs for the injured Jackie Heinricher. Neilsen has had five years of GTD experience at the twice around the clock event and is hoping to score her best result to date. Despite making her first entry in the Acura NSX GT3 Evo with MSR, the two-time IMSA GTD Champion is prepared for the challenge.
“The car was very cool to drive and we did some good testing with the tires to get know what the car will be like for the longer stints,” said Nielsen. “I think we are in a strong position. There are always little improvements to make and that’s why we have the sessions before the race. It’s a 24 hour race so the conditions are going to change throughout and we as drivers will just need to adjust whatever we are dealing with. I would say we have a strong start and I am quite positive for the race.”
Bia Figueiredo, No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ MSR Acura NSX GT3 Evo:
Figueiredo, also known as Ana Beatriz, has made a name for herself through her career in IndyCar and most recently Brazilian Stock Car competition. Figueiredo took quickly to the Acura NSX GT3 Evo, for her first time in a car of its kind as she prepares for her first ever Rolex 24 At Daytona start. Figueiredo showed her speed early on as she qualified on pole during the Roar event weekend.
“It was pretty fun working with the girls and spending more time with them,” said Figueiredo. “In Kat (Legge) and Simona’s case we always raced against each other, so we didn’t talk much. Now we are working towards the same goal target in the same car. The dynamic was the same as if it was a male driver team but with female jokes. We all know that the car won’t be perfect for all drivers, so we have all been working hard to manage those differences and make it consistent over the long stints.”
Simona De Silvestro, No. 57 Heinricher Racing w/ MSR Acura NSX GT3 Evo:
2019 will mark the first Rolex 24 At Daytona for Simona De Silvestro. The “Iron Maiden” saw success early in her career in open wheel competition, winning the Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year Award in 2010 and driving to her first IndyCar podium in 2013. Now, De Silvestro will take on the 24 Hour endurance classic for the first time with MSR.
“The NSX was really great and it was my first time driving it at the Roar,” said De Silvestro. “It’s quite different than anything I am used to especially with all of the aids like ABS and traction control, but it makes it exciting to drive. I was also getting used to the track at Daytona which is a very cool and iconic place and to do a few laps there was good preparation for the 24 hours. The car was quick and I think it’s going to be a good one.”