Daytona24: Farnbacher Loles Racing race report

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Farnbacher Loles Racing set the fastest GT race lap en route to a top-five finish during the Rolex 24 At Daytona, after leading the class through most of the 24-hour endurance race. The No. 86 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car topped the team cars,...

Farnbacher Loles Racing set the fastest GT race lap en route to a top-five finish during the Rolex 24 At Daytona, after leading the class through most of the 24-hour endurance race. The No. 86 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car topped the team cars, finishing fifth with drivers Dominik Farnbacher, Eric Lux, Matthew Marsh and Kevin Roush. Farnbacher drove the fast lap -- one minute 50.241 seconds on the 3.56-mile Daytona International Speedway infield road course in Daytona Beach, Fla. Roush was the GT leader when he lost traction during the 19th hour of the race. He was towed back to the garage, where the crew quickly replaced the car's driveshaft, but still lost five class positions and 10 laps.

The No. 88 Porsche drivers also had a strong weekend, finishing seventh in class, just ahead of the No. 87 in eighth. Steve Johnson, Dave Lacey, Robert Nearn, James Sofronas and Richard Westbrook were behind the wheel of the 88. Wolf Henzler, Leh Keen, Dirk Werner and Westbrook shared driving duty in the No. 87.

The No. 89 Farnbacher Loles European car, driven by Pierre Kaffer, Giacomo Petrobelli, Gabrio Rosa, Giorgio Rosa and Alan Simonsen, finished 15th in class. The No. 85 Children's Tumor Foundation Porsche finished 16th for Richard Campollo, Michael Gomez, Daniel Graeff, Henzler and Ron Yarab, despite a non-functioning clutch and other mechanical issues.

Daniel Graeff, No. 85: "It's the most unbelievable challenge I've ever experienced -- emotionally, physically and mentally. I love it! We brought the car home, but we left a little bit on the table this year. I'm headed back here next year and we're going to get it as a team."

Matthew Marsh, No. 86: "To finish a 24-hour race is brilliant. Only 50 per cent of the field finished here this weekend and we were the class of the field. We got the fastest lap, we led most of the way, we had the best-looking car, with the nicest drivers, the most fun mechanics, just everything was brilliant. For most of us, the doing is more important than the result. And the doing was special. It's not the watch -- I've already got a Rolex -- it's the driving that's important."

Wolf Henzler, No. 87: "Our car was running good and everything worked very well until we got a problem in the rear of the car. We had to bring it back to the garage and we lost 20 laps. We couldn't win any more, so we just tried to get some positions and get some points for the season. Our car was running great -- there are some parts missing, but the car still had good handling. Thanks to Farnbacher Loles and everybody. We didn't get the result we wanted, but we finished and we scored some points."

Steve Johnson, No. 88: "It was a great run -- seventh GT and 15th overall. I don't think we could have asked for much more than that. We were, however, one broken steering wheel away from fifth. I've never seen anything like that, but I'm glad to know I could drive [the car back to the pits] by those little prongs. It was a great effort by Farnbacher Loles and all the guys on the team. I'm just really proud of this finish and I can't wait to come back and do it again."

Giacomo Petrobelli, No. 89: "I'm happy to have finished this year. The car was fast and we were running well, but unfortunately, we had two mechanical issues -- one initially with the clutch and then with the driveshaft -- which made us lose something like 70 laps. If you look at where we ended up, 73 laps behind the GT leaders, we could have been on the podium if we didn't have issues. But that's 24-hour racing."

-credit: flr

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