Grand American Road Racing Association announced today that Daytona Prototype chassis and bodywork designs submitted by Picchio SpA have been approved for construction. The Picchio DP2 will contest the Rolex Sports Car Series' premier class in 2003. The Italian-based manufacturer becomes the fifth approved Daytona Prototype chassis builder and the second to have its bodywork designs accepted.
The Picchio DP2 will be constructed near Teramo, Italy and distributed in the United States by Momentum Motorcars of Houston. "With the support of Riccardo Weitz (owner of Momentum Motorcars) and Gary Schulze, our GM, we were able to bring to the USA a new manufacturer," Momentum representative/driver Armando Trentini commented. "There will be three Picchio DP2 cars at the 2003 Rolex 24 At Daytona, and all three will be prepared by G&W; Motorsports. Momentum Motorcars will field one of the cars, with another being fielded by G&W.; The third will be backed by a customer that we cannot make public at this time."
The collaborative effort between Momentum Motorcars and G&W; Motorsports began this season with the #07 BMW-powered Picchio in the SportsRacing Prototype II class. "It has always been a dream of mine to be closely associated with a manufacturer that has a legitimate shot at a high-level championship. The new Daytona Prototype and our involvement with Picchio will allow G&W; Motorsports to be able to accomplish that dream," G&W; Motorsports team owner Cole Scrogham remarked.
The first Picchio DP2 is scheduled to be unveiled at the Grand American Finale at Daytona International Speedway, Nov. 8-10. The other two Picchios will be delivered to G&W; Motorsports the first week of December. All three cars slated to race in the 2003 Rolex 24 At Daytona will be powered by 5.0 BMW V8 engines, however the manufacturer has designed the car to support other production engines if requested by the customer prior to construction.
Although a complete driver lineup has not been announced for the three cars, Trentini reports that he will be one of the drivers in the Momentum Motorcars Daytona Prototype. Past Rolex Series champions Darren Law and Andy Lally will also race one of the three Picchio DP2, though which entry has yet to be determined for the two championship drivers currently partnering in the #07 BMW Picchio.