Billericay drivers Bradley Smith and Lewis Plato in final testing ahead of Daytona races

Echo: Bradley Smith Bradley Smith

BILLERICAY drivers Bradley Smith and Lewis Plato will be stepping into the unknown this weekend as they complete their final testing before their big races at Daytona.

The Mectech Motorsport duo are in action in the Rolex 24 meeting at the world famous American circuit at the end of January and will get their last chance to prepare this weekend.

Smith will be looking to build on a successful first test session at Daytona but will be doing it with a new team, while Plato will get his first taste of the Florida track.

“Bradley had a very successful first test with the Action Express team but will be with Marsh Racing for the Rolex 24,” said Mectech team boss Mike Smith.

“There were car issues which meant the testing time was limited the second time he was out there but we have been assured they will be resolved for this weekend’s testing.

“Bradley has driven the 2013-spec car and will be in the 2014 version this weekend but whatever happens I think he is going to stand out if his first test was anything to go by.

“Lewis went over to America testing two or three weeks ago and it went very well for him. This weekend will be his first time at Daytona and he’s looking forward to it.”

Smith, 22, won his drive in the Rolex 24 endurance race after securing the 2013 Radical SR3 Challenge championship to net the Sunoco Daytona Challenge.

Plato accrued sufficient points from his Radical Clubman’s Cup campaign to secure the Sunoco Grand-Am 200 challenge prize of a seat in the support race.

Plato will be a driving in a Chevrolet Camaro in the 200-mile Grand-Am 200 race. Smith completed 100 laps of the famous banked 3.56-mile course in his first test with Action Express and picked up tips from the team’s drivers Christian Fittipaldi, Joao Barbosa and Sebastian Bourdais. He dipped below the reference times set by Fittipaldi and finished the session third fastest overall and the quickest in a 2013-spec Daytona Prototype sports car.

The Rolex 24 is held on January 25 and 26 and is the debut event of the Tudor United Sportscar Championship season, which combines sports cars and grand tourers for the first time.

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