Gidley to race at Daytona eight years after huge Rolex 24 shunt

Memo Gidley will compete at Daytona this weekend in the IMSA Prototype Challenge season-opener, eight years after a horrendous accident at the same track left him with severe injuries.

Gidley to race at Daytona eight years after huge Rolex 24 shunt

Gidley was racing the famed Bob Stallings Racing entry, a Corvette Daytona Prototype, in the Rolex 24 when, while traveling at an estimated 120mph, he struck the rear of a GT car that had just lost power.

The accident left Gidley, a former rising star in open-wheel racing, with a spinal fracture and injuries to his left arm and leg. Despite nine surgeries since then, Gidley still suffers pain from nerve damage.

However, this weekend, he will drive the #23 AL Autosport with JDC Motorsports Duqueine D08 LMP3 car when the IMPC forms part of the Roar Before the 24 weekend.

“It’s neat,” Gidley told IMSA.com. “In 2018, I raced LMP3s in the Prototype Challenge with FMO Racing. Getting back into a prototype at that point was great. The LMP3 formula is awesome. The bang for the buck, you just can’t beat it in a GT3 or even a GT4 car.

“I enjoyed it, I have some experience in these cars and getting back to Daytona is awesome. I love the track and just the whole atmosphere. And Jim France is one of my heroes just because of who he is and what he’s put together, so I’m just excited to get back there again this week.”

Gidley will share driving duties with Alexander Koreiba who is new to Daytona, and who Gidley describes as “a nice, aspiring driver, working hard to get his way into racing. "He’s never been to Daytona, so we’ll be dealing with a bunch of stuff. The most track time we have is the three-hour race on Saturday. Otherwise, we have two 45-minute practices and qualifying on Friday…

“My focus is doing a good job for AL Autosport in the three-hour race and helping them do what they want to do. Beyond this weekend, my plans for the season are kind of up in the air.

“It’s like I do all the time. I just like getting out to the track. Being out there when I’m driving my kart or anything else, that experience is good. You never know what’s around the corner, but I’m always ready to go, have some fun and get some results.”

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