McLaughlin water bottle issue causes Daytona setback


The Tower Motorsport #8 Oreca LMP2 07 of Scott McLaughlin stopped at Daytona. Image: Rhys Vandersyde

Scott McLaughlin’s Tower Motorsport squad has suffered an early setback in the 2023 24 Hours of Daytona.

The #8 Oreca LMP2 07 that McLaughlin is sharing with his IndyCar team-mate Josef Newgarden, team owner John Farano and Chip Ganassi Racing junior Kyffin Simpson stopped on track at the West Hairpin on the opening lap.

The three-time Supercars champion explained how a water bottle fitting was responsible for causing an electrical issue.

“The water bottle fitting leaked onto the ECU, which is sitting underneath where the radio is – it blew the ECU up,” the Kiwi told NBC.

“So by the time we got the car back, we lost a few laps, and by the time we sort of fixed that problem and figured it out, we lost even more.

“So, unfortunate, but you know, you never give up, you just got to press on and get it done.”

Following the incident, McLaughlin took to Twitter posting: “Never. Give. Up.”

The team recovered to be nine laps back from the leaders in 23rd position, with McLaughlin’s IndyCar team-mate Josef Newgarden at the wheel.

McLaughlin is now behind the wheel of the #8 in 21st position overall.

In the lead-up to the race, McLaughlin declared that he was a genuine contender for a class win on his prototype racing debut.

He was not the only Antipodean to strike trouble in the opening quarter of the 61st edition of the 24-hour sports car endurance race, with Practice 3 pacesetter Matt Campbell’s #7 Porsche Penske Motorsport’s 963 entry, that he is sharing with former Formula 1 driver Felipe Nasr and Michael Christensen, encountering an issue while fighting for the lead.

“Unfortunately, we encountered an issue around 5.5 hours into the race after fighting for the lead,” Campbell posted to Twitter.

“We’ve resolved the problem and continued, lost many laps but we’re fighting back!”

Nasr is currently behind the wheel of the #7 in 24th position and 19 laps adrift of the leaders.

At the head of the field, the #31 of Whelen Engineering Racing Cadillac V-LMDh of Jack Aitken/Pipo Derani/Alexander Sims, leads from the #10 Konica Minolta Acura ARX-06 of Brendon Hartley/Ricky Taylor/Felipe Albuquerque/Louis Deletraz, with the #02 Cadillac Racing entry of Alex Lynn/Earl Bamber/Richard Westbrook in third.

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