How Sebring stacks up
Sebring might be half the length of its big brothers at Daytona and Le Mans, but it’s a race that’s arguably tougher, certainly on machinery if not on the drivers.
“It’s as tough as anywhere on the car,” says Jarvis, who wasn’t in the winning Mazda last season but previously won the 12 Hours with Audi back in 2013. “Being 12 hours, for a driver, it’s more mentally draining to get up at 4am and switch on for a 24-hour race. Purely because of the duration for a driver I’d probably say a 24 hours is harder. Even Daytona, which isn’t that physical. Having said that, after 12 hours at Sebring I’m as bruised and battered as I am anywhere.”
“I agree, on the car it’s one of the hardest,” says Tincknell, who led Mazda’s winning crew in the Covid-19-delayed 12 Hours last year. “And I certainly feel like a 70-year-old man the morning after. It’s pretty brutal. Even though it’s half the distance of Le Mans and Daytona it’s similar in what it asks of you. One of the big things around there is the darkness because there’s no external lighting, whereas at Le Mans there are floodlights. When it’s dark at Sebring, it’s really dark. And the infield is tight and twisty, so catch the traffic in the wrong point and you might have to take risks. It’s demanding.”