A starring drive by Pipo Derani and a near-flawless bid by team, drivers and automobile saw a story books re-written in Daytona, with Tequila Patron ESM scoring altogether feat in a 54th Rolex 24 during Daytona.
Derani, in his entrance with a Scott Sharp-owned team, took ESM’s Ligier JS P2 Honda to a 26.166-second feat over a No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP of Max Angelelli, following a exhilarated late foe conflict that went a approach of a P2 entry.
Having started from a front row, Derani jumped into an early lead, and after a DeltaWing and Michael Shank Racing’s early exits, ESM was probably in a category of a possess in terms of undisguised speed.
Solid drives by co-drivers Sharp, Johannes outpost Overbeek, and a brief stint by Ed Brown kept a automobile crucially on a lead path and prepared to conflict once a 22-year-old Brazilian got behind behind a circle for his shutting triple stint.
Derani took over a lead from Ricky Taylor with 1 hour and 45 mins ago, and never looked back, notwithstanding gearbox alarms going off in a shutting laps.
The win noted a series of firsts, in ESM’s initial Rolex 24 win, a initial vital continuation feat for a Onroak Automotive-designed Liger JS P2, as good as Honda’s initial altogether win during Daytona.
It was also a initial P2 automobile to explain feat in a Florida continuation classical and usually a third win by a ACO-spec antecedent in a post-merger.
For group owners Sharp, it was his second altogether Rolex 24 victory, 20 years after pity a winning automobile with Wayne Taylor, whose group finished second on Sunday.
A late-race quivering and empty smoke forced Jordan Taylor out of a No. 10 Corvette DP on a final array stop, that eventually dashed any hopes of feat for brothers Ricky and Jordan Taylor, Angelelli and late serve Rubens Barrichello.
The No. 90 Visit Florida Racing Corvette DP of Ryan Dalziel, Marc Goossens and Ryan Hunter-Reay finished a lectern in third after battling ECU issues during a late-race array stop, that cost them some-more than half a lap.
Defending Prototype category champions Action Express came home fourth, with a No. 01 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Riley-Ford finished a top-five after both being behind by trips to a garage.
An collision by Kyle Larson — caused by stop issues — derailed a sister No. 02 Ganassi entry, that finished 13th altogether and 7th in class, behind a No. 31 Action Express entry, that suffered a peep glow and driveshaft failure.
While P2s dominated a early stages, all solely a race-winning ESM entrance ran into trouble.
The pole-sitting SMP Racing BR Engineering BR01 Nissan fought stop issues but ultimately finished. The same couldn’t be pronounced for a dual Mazdas, that showed considerable gait though retired with flywheel and engine failures, respectively.
Shank’s assign came to an finish in a tenth hour when Ozz Negri stopped on line with engine failure, while a DeltaWing late in a fourth hour following an collision with a Prototype Challenge car.
In PC, JDC-Miller Motorsports pennyless by to explain category victory, in a foe of presence for a spec prototypes.
Kenton Koch took a team’s No. 85 Oreca FLM09 to a four-lap feat over a No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports entry, driven to a finish by Tom Kimber-Smith following in an impassioned conflict of attrition.
Reigning IMSA Prototype Lites champion Koch survived both a fuel haven emanate early and a pile-up in a 16th hour, that cut their lead in half. It came after a attack opening army by Stephen Simpson, who led a opening hours.
The pairing common a class-winning automobile with Chris Miller and Mikhail Goikhberg, imprinting a Minnesota-based team’s first-ever WeatherTech Championship feat after dual seasons in top-level IMSA competition.
Defending Rolex 24 category leader PR1 and Kimber-Smith also led early though was behind by a fuel siphon emanate overnight, followed by a serve outing to a garage.
The No. 20 BAR1 Motorsports entry, led by Johnny Mowlem, finished a lectern in third, nonetheless good down a using sequence after mixed delays.
Pre-race favorites CORE autosport late in a sixth hour with engine failure, while leading, while a span of Starworks Motorsport entries — also featuring built lineups — forsaken out of row in apart accidents.
A thespian duel between dual GT heavyweights, Corvette and Porsche, finished with Corvette winning a GT Le Mans category in a stirring 54th Rolex 24 during Daytona in an unimaginable 1-2 print finish.
The dual Corvette C7.Rs were distant by 0.034 of a second after 24 hours, with Oliver Gavin circumference Antonio Garcia during a mottled flag.
It wound adult as a duel between teammates, as a Corvette Racing group authorised a dual Corvettes to foe for a win between themselves in a final 15 mins after a formerly trouble-free expostulate a initial 23 hours and 45 minutes.
Gavin positioned a No. 4 Corvette in a lead after a bold, dauntless and adventurous pass of Earl Bamber’s No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR during a West Horseshoe.
There was really teenager left front to right back hit between a dual with usually over 30 mins to go, with Gavin rising forward and Race Control statute no serve action.
Gavin’s hopes and dreams of a feat depended on either he could reason off a hard-charging Antonio Garcia, who’d pitted with 37 mins to go for 4 new tires, and afterwards proceeded to run him down.
Garcia done a pierce on Gavin during Turn 1 for a lead though usually small moments after on dilemma exit, Gavin reason him off to hang onto a lead.
But then, on a final lap, Garcia attempted one final try to a outward of Gavin and came adult usually 0.034 of a second brief in an implausible finale and 1-2 finish for Corvette.
It outlines a initial win for a new contingent of Gavin, Tommy Milner and Marcel Fassler, and a initial win for Gavin and Milner on U.S. dirt given Sebring in 2013.
The car also overcame a stop and reason and 60 second chastisement for a array light exit violation, that occurred in a 21st hour.
Garcia, who common a No. 3 automobile with Jan Magnussen and Mike Rockenfeller, also had a chastisement progressing in a foe for a array line speeding violation. But a call to go onto new tires unleashed a “King of Spain” for adequate of a quip to make a win possibility possible.
Bamber, who common a No. 912 Porsche with Fred Makowiecki and Michael Christensen, enjoyed a mostly trouble-free expostulate to finish third.
Both a No. 912 automobile and a polesitting No. 911 automobile of Nick Tandy, Patrick Pilet and Kevin Estre led a infancy of a foe in category between them, though a No. 911 car’s hopes were dashed with a expostulate line emanate while using seventh in a 19th hour.
Scuderia Corsa enjoyed a utterly clever GTLM entrance with a new No. 68 Ferrari 488 GTE, finale best of a 3 new turbocharged cars, in fourth with Alessandro Pier Guidi, Alexandre Premat, Daniel Serra and Memo Rojas.
BMW also cumulative a top-five finish on a entrance of a new turbocharged car, a No. 25 BMW Team RLL M6 GTLM, common by Bill Auberlen, Dirk Werner, Augusto Farfus and Bruno Spengler. The No. 100 automobile suffered an apparent stop disaster and collision for Lucas Luhr overnight.
The dual debuting Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GTs, that were approaching to feature, usually done headlines for a innumerable of automatic woes that didn’t seem benefaction from testing. Nonetheless, both a Nos. 66 and 67 Fords done a mottled dwindle in seventh and ninth in class.
The GT Daytona finish also finished with a ton of drama, and usually usually adequate fuel in a tank of a No. 44 Magnus Racing Audi R8 LMS to win in a team’s initial foe with a new car, and in a car’s U.S. foe debut.
Magnus, with a new components, reason onto a win with usually adequate fuel as Rene Rast brought a automobile home to a win in a automobile he common with Andy Lally, John Potter and Marco Seefried.
It gives Audi a fourth continuation win in 5 vital starts with a new R8 LMS. The new Audi won a 24 Hours of Nürburgring and Sepang 12 Hours final year, and a Hankook 24 Hours of Dubai progressing this month.
Heartbreak occurred for Lamborghini, that looked staid to take a win with several of a new Huracán GT3s in their U.S. debut, though came adult brief with all 5 cars.
Despite an eleventh hour accident between a Paul Miller Racing and Change Racing cars when using initial and second, Konrad Motorsport scarcely took a win though afterwards ran out of fuel in a final 3 mins with a No. 28 Huracán GT3.
Fabio Babini had sealed some-more than 30 seconds in a final hour on Rast, upheld him with underneath 10 mins to go into Turn 1, though afterwards ran dry during a end.
Babini was staid to broach a win following a quip expostulate after an early-race, three-minute, 30-plus second chastisement for an crude pass around procedure. Once he pitted for a final dash of fuel, a No. 28 automobile he common with Marc Basseng, Lance Willsey and Rolf Ineichen finished fifth in class.
Team principal Franz Konrad was seeking his second Daytona category win, after also winning a GT2 category in 1998.
Black Swan Racing started from 19th in a 22-car GTD margin though put adult utterly a quarrel in a lapse to IMSA, and finished best of a Porsche 911 GT3 Rs in that car’s altogether debut.
Tim Pappas, Patrick Long, Andy Pilgrim and Nicky Catsburg finished second in a No. 540 Porsche. Catsburg, who starred in a win during final year’s Spa 24 Hours, was disorder in Rast in a final stages before a late-race splash-and-dash brought them down. He finished 3.048 seconds behind Rast.
The No. 93 Riley Motorsports Dodge Viper GT3-R, a comparatively late entrant, finished a podium in a hands of 4 Texans (Ben Keating, Gar Robinson, Eric Foss, Jeff Mosing) and an Irishman (Damien Faulkner) ran clean all day.
Aston Martin Racing delivered a still though plain expostulate to fourth, despite never utterly in genuine win contention, with a party of Pedro Lamy, Mathias Lauda, Paul Dalla Lana and Richie Stanaway in a team’s No. 98 Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3.
Stanaway was using second in a final hour of a foe before a vital off-course outing during a Bus Stop chicane, that cost him a spot.
The aforementioned No. 28 Konrad Lamborghini finished fifth.
There were copiousness of other story lines to follow within a 22-car GTD class.
Of note, a best of a new BMW M6 GT3s finished sixth, forward of Scuderia Corsa’s No. 63 Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 in seventh, and that meant that all 7 manufacturers in category finished in a tip 7 positions.