Daytona 24: Gotham Competition race report

Newest Rolex GT team runs hard until 15th hour! As the newest GT team in the Grand Am Rolex series, Gotham Competition team owner Jerome Jacalone realized the massive challenge that is the Rolex 24 at Daytona. However, with the combination of...

Newest Rolex GT team runs hard until 15th hour!

As the newest GT team in the Grand Am Rolex series, Gotham Competition team owner Jerome Jacalone realized the massive challenge that is the Rolex 24 at Daytona. However, with the combination of crew chief Jack Atkinson and car chief Ken McGuire the team felt confident in its abilities to compete well utilizing the Porsche 2008 GT3 Cup car by setting a comfortable yet competitive pace throughout the event.

The team did not think the qualifying position would have an overwhelming effect on the outcome of the event, and only asked team driver and owner Joe Jacalone to get the car into the show safely so it could focus on the real task at hand, the gruling 24 hour event that lies ahead. With a back of the grid qualifying result the team felt the car was in a good position to avoid any first lap incidents by overly aggressive drivers and could work its way through the field.

By hour twelve the team had accomplished just that and had moved up to 36th overall and 19th in class due to the stellar and incident-free driving duties of brothers Jerome and Joe Jacalone as well as the quick and smooth driving of the father/ son duo of Jim and Bob Michaelian. However in the 15th hour, after completing 364 laps of the 3.56 mile course, the team started suffering transmission issues and finally had to retire the car with a gearbox failure.

The team was pleased with its on-track performance and the professionalism of its near-rookie crew but was obviously disappointed with its inability to finish this grueling around-the-clock race. The team will immediately go back to work and the car will be disassembled and inspected in preparation for March's race at the Miami-Homestead Speedway.

-credit: gc

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Bob Michaelian , Jerome Jacalone , Joe Jacalone