Donkey Bop Racing Scores Four Top Ten Finishes In The 24 Hours Of Sebring
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Donkey Bop Racing Scores Four Top Ten Finishes In The 24 Hours Of Sebring

Auto racing began five minutes after the second car was built.

-Henry Ford

(Sebring, Florida) Donkey Bop Racing’s four entries into the 2020 24 Hours of Sebring Charity Race all scored top 10 finishes. A great result on one of the most famous road tracks in the world. There is something very instinctive and innate in race drivers when driving against really good competition, yet finishing strong and well. Every single Donkey Bop driver had this feeling after a superb team showing in this race, the final endurance race for the calendar year 2020.

Right after World War II, a Russian-American aeronautical engineer Alex Ulmann was looking for airfields to convert military aircraft to civilian use. He staged the first significant United States based endurance race at Sebring on the old military airbase there using the 24 Hours of Le Mans as his model. And since that time the track has become a mainstay on the endurance race calendar.

The field in this 24-hour endurance race was loaded with high-powered teams and superb drivers. For instance, the four drivers in the winning entry in the Le Mans Prototype 2 class had an average irating of 4,256. Despite the very stiff competition, all three of Donkey Bop’s LMP2 entries and Donkey Bop’s GTE entry all scored top 10 finishes in class.

Donkey Bop #001, piloted by team principal Jim Ray (US), Daniele Noventa (ITA) Stephen Jones (GB), and Zachery Robinson (US) finished a very strong 6th place. Jim Ray led the way with the fastest average lap time of 1:50.336 and the young phenom driver Zachery Robinson right behind him at 1:50.454. Noventa had only 5 safety incident points over 166 laps run, and Ray had only 4 safety incident points over 120 laps. Brit Stephen Jones was the “iron man” running a remarkable total of 249 laps during the race.

Donkey Bop #002, driven by Jordan McGregor (US), Mathew Maseko (CAN), Jason Glaze (US), JF Godin (CAN), and Cody Bahr (US), finished 8th in class. McGregor and Godin had superb races with average lap times at 1:51.7. Maseko was the iron man running a total of 223 laps.

Donkey Bop #003 finished in 9th right behind their teammates in the #002 car. The #003 was driven by Milt Minter, Jr.(US), Larry Krupp (US), Jerry Foehrkolb (US), Ken Soszka (US), and John R Hall (GB). Foehrkolb and Hall led the way with the fastest average lap time in the low 1:52s. Milt Minter, Jr. had the best safety record in the race with only 10 incident points over his 120 laps driven (an incident rate of 8.3%).

Donkey Bop #008 was the sole Donkey Bop Racing entry in the GTE class. This car was driven by John Nielson (US), Chris Phillips (US), Hal Kemrite (US), Kris Thompson (US), and Chester Barkin (US). The Porsche 911 RSR sported the white with red trim livery from driver Kris Thompson’s employer Don Roger Norman, who sponsored a Porsche 935, driven by Brian Redman and Charles Mendez, who won the real world 12 hours of Sebring in 1978. Among the drivers of the “Ocho” car, John Nielson had an absolutely outstanding race, with the fastest average lap time, fastest lap, and best safety record for the race.

Most importantly, this race had good karma. All the entry fees for all cars as well as other donations totalling over $3,000 in this race were donated 100% to Stand Up to Cancer (SU2C), a cancer research charity..

Maseko captured the sentiments of the Donkey Bop drivers best with his comment: “That was hands down the most difficult and hard fought 8th place I have ever been a part of earning….That was a great way to end the year.”