17-year-old Formula Regional Americas champion Kyffin Simpson has confirmed his entry in the 2022 Rolex 24 At Daytona with GTD contenders Gradient Racing, taking the wheel of an HPD-supported Acura NSX GT3 EVO alongside two-time IMSA GTD champion Mario Farnbacher, Marc Miller and Till Bechtolsheimer.
In addition to the main event on January 27th-30th, Kyffin has agreed a season-long GTD program as an official Honda Performance Development driver alongside his full 2022 Indy Lights season. This includes the Rolex ‘Roar Before the Daytona 24’ qualifier on January 22nd-23rd and three further IMSA endurance racing events in the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup.
Comprised of the four marquee endurance events on the IMSA WeatherTech Championship schedule, the IMEC covers 52 hours of racing at Daytona International Raceway, Sebring International Raceway, Watkins Glen International, and Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.
Kyffin graduated from the HPD GT3 Academy programme in November 2021 with a two-day stint at Sebring International Raceway, the very same week he clinched the 2021 FR Americas Powered by Honda championship title. He excelled in all areas including fuel saving, race starts and night driving thanks to HPD’s comprehensive introduction to endurance racing and multi-driver events.
Speaking ahead of his sportscar racing debut at Daytona, Kyffin said:
“I’m extremely excited to be racing in the Rolex 24 next month, and I’m honoured to represent Honda at such a huge event! Considering this will be my first endurance race, you could say I have been thrown in the deep end but thanks to Honda, Jon Mirachi and the HPD Academy team, I feel very prepared for racing the Acura NSX GT3 EVO with my new teammates. This Christmas break has been my busiest ever with testing, watching old races and training. I can’t wait for the first session at the Roar in a few weeks’ time.”
Andris Laivins, Team Manager at Gradient Racing added:
“As a part of the HPD and Acura Motorsports family, we have kept a close eye on the HPD GT3 Academy and the talent they are developing. Kyffin has been a standout in the Academy and his superb open-wheel record speaks for itself. Gradient is fortunate to have him join the team for the IMEC, as we now have a full lineup of drivers with significant experience in the Acura NSX GT3 Evo. Daytona is truly a special race, and I’m excited to add Kyffin’s raw speed to the mix when we land in Florida. We have a great team put together and I can’t wait to get the season started.”
Gradient Racing was formed in 2018 and is led by Andris Laivins. Its efforts in the 2019 Blancpain GT World Challenge America netted one win and several podiums in the Pro-Am category, before the team shifted its focus to the IMSA WeatherTech Championship in 2020. 2021 was the team’s most successful season to date, with a podium finish at the Detroit Grand prix, and second place in GTD at the Rolex 24 along with Pro-Am victory at October’s Indianapolis 8 Hour with SunEnergy1 Racing.
Action at the 2022 Rolex 24 At Daytona kicks off with the preceding Roar Before The 24, January 22nd-23rd to determine the starting grid for the main event on January 29th. You can follow and support Kyffin’s progress on social media via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Kyffin is supported by Simpson Race Products, GoPro action cameras, Spy sunglasses, DART, BODDENS, Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa, and Kokoro Performance driver coaching services.