The Toyota-powered AAR Eagle Mk III is one of those racing cars that was too fast for its own good. Its incredible success saw it win 21 of the 27 races it competed in, prompting rival teams to drop out at the end of the 1992 season.
A year later, IMSA’s monstrously fast GTP era was dead, and just to give you an idea of how fast those cars were, it’s taken until 2019 for the Mk III’s Daytona road course lap record to be broken.
Well, sort of. Mazda’s RT24-P IMSA car set a time of 1:33.398sec with Oliver Jarvis at the wheel on Sunday, comfortably beating the Mk III’s 1:33.875 effort. But as it was a test session - the Daytona 24-previewing ‘Roar Before the 24’ event - it’s an unofficial record.
Jarvis’ teammate Harry Tincknell was just behind, meanwhile, posting the second fastest time of the session with a 1:33.423. It was a dominant session for Mazda Team Joest, with the closest competitor to Jarvis and Tincknell -Acura’s Ricky Taylor - trailing the pair by over eight-tenths of a second.
Will Mazda be able to officially break the record? With the 24 Hours of Daytona taking place 26-27 January, we don’t long to wait before finding out.