MacNeil, Segal and Griffin ready for 24
LE MANS, France, (June 14, 2018) – The JMW/WeatherTech Ferrari team will start the 86th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans from ninth in the LM GTE AM category.
Drivers Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill.), Jeff Segal (Miami, Fla.) and Liam Griffin (Britain) all put in maximum laps during this week’s four free practice sessions. The combination of night and day time laps have the trio well in-tune with the No. 84 JMW/WeatherTech Ferrari 488 at the Circuit de la Sarthe.
Ending the first day, Wednesday, of running the team posted a fast lap of 3:57.016 around the 8-mile Le Mans circuit. The three drivers combined to turn 42 laps with Segal posting the team’s fastest time on lap 23 in the early hour of night fall.
On Thursday, the Jim McWhirter led team focused on the race set-up of the car and giving each driver a handful of laps in the white-and-black Ferrari as a final prep for the race. Segal had the first stint and put the fastest lap for the team on the week with a time of 3:53.439. The remainder of the session was dedicated to getting Griffin and MacNeil their last laps before the green flag drops on the twice-around-the-clock classic at 3 p.m. CET (9 a.m. ET) on Saturday.
“The JMW/WeatherTech Ferrari has been handling very well,” MacNeil said. “It is the same chassis that won the race last year, so the team and the car is very capable. We have been searching for speed, finding little bits every session. The Porsches are showing a lot of pace. Come race time we plan to be very competitive. The JMW Motorsport team has been very welcoming and easy to work with. We all have the same goal – to win. So far so good, now it is time to see what race day will bring us.”
“Yesterday was a good day of running,” Griffin said. “At night the rear facing camera went out, that is difficult as you cannot see who is coming up on you and the closing speeds here are amazing. We are getting consistent. We need to find a little bit more pace. I think we will be very consistent for the race. Some of the AM drivers are quick and those in the Porsches are very fast. We will run consistent laps and stay out of the garage, we should be able to be there or there about at the end.”
“Practice has been going well,” Segal said. “We are holding ourselves to a very high standard. I’ve done well here in the past, Cooper has done well and the team and the car are the defending race winners. Everyone’s expectation is there for success. We have had to fight for the speed. Other cars and manufacturers seem to be showing speed a little more easily than we have. We’ve had to chip away at it piece-by-piece. We were P6 after the early practice today. The JMW/WeatherTech Ferrari has some more speed left, but we did not make another attempt. We know we have a little more time if we can put that lap together, but we are focusing on the race. Liam and Cooper are doing a great job and the team is providing a very well prepared JMW/WeatherTech Ferrari.”
Live coverage of the race will be broadcast on the Velocity channel starting at 8:30 a.m. ET, Saturday, June 16.