TRG's Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona Win by the Numbers
It takes an army
Petaluma, California, Now that the dust has settled on TRG's one - two finish at the 47th running of the Grand-Am Rolex Series Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona in January, the reflection on the data tells the tale of the race. Justin Marks, RJ Valentine, Andy Lally, Patrick Long and Joerg Bergmeister drove the No. 67 TRG Porsche 997 to victory by running a near perfect race.
The team's third win at the 24 hour started with excellent preparation by the TRG crew that started over five months ago. With a fleet of four new Porsche 997 GT3 race cars and one 2008 model, the preparation for the early January test was no small feat by this seasoned team. The cars ran flawlessly at the test and were just as strong during the race. The No. 67 finished the race in ninth place overall, including the Daytona Prototype field, and the No. 66 came next -tenth overall.
All that the No. 67 Construct Corps/CRG/No Fear Energy Drinks/K1 Speed/Voodoo Ride/Gemstone Winery/TRG Porsche GT3 needed during the 24 hours of racing was gas, oil, tires, and a fresh driver.
Justin Marks was impressed with how the team and drivers performed with very few mistakes.
"I think that I was surprised at how clean the race was," Marks said. "We had two small penalties and one doughnut on the car. Those were the only hiccups in 24 hours of hard running. To me that's amazing. I was also surprised at the pace we had to run for the majority of the race. You'd never have thought it was the longest race in professional motorsports. The pace was so fast for the first 18 hours. Obviously winning the Rolex 24 is a big deal. But it's a different kind of win. It's such a huge effort by so many people that instead of it being something personal for me, the emotions are of pride and honor to just be apart of something so significant. I was more excited to see the looks on everyone faces and the emotions they showed than any kind of personal achievement. I just feel lucky to be a part of it. Also, it was important for me to deliver a result to Construct Corps. They've been behind me through two difficult seasons and never waived their support. This win is my thank you."
Andy Lally notched his second Rolex 24 Hour win which ranks at the top of his already impressive racing statistics.
"I would call it more relieving than surprising," Lally said. "So many people work so hard for so long to try and win the Daytona 24 that when everything seems like it is coming together that's when things get the most stressful. Every team member is trying not to make a mistake while at the same time hoping that some of the things that are not within their control go the right way. We knew we had a great car and we knew we had a good driver line-up and we knew we could win the race. We just needed it all to come together and it did. Every single person that had a hand on this car is deserving of the victory, our crew at the track as well as our crew behind the scenes and including the people that managed the entire process. As drivers, we were very fortunate to have such a good team behind us and TRG has proven year after year that they are the best at what they do."
"This win is way up at the top. This is my second win at the Daytona 24 and obviously the first time around holds sentimental value. Daytona has always been, hands down, my most valued and targeted prize over any other endurance race. Anytime you can win a race at this track you have done something special that is a career highlight. It is also a great way to kick-off a year that you intend on racing for a Championship. This was round one of 12 for us and we will walk into VIR with the points lead and the goal of keeping that lead for the rest of the season."
Spencer Pumpelly in the No. 66 AXA/Mitchell Rubber/Wealth Management Strategies/TRG Porsche GT3 was surprised by the overall pace of the GT race.
"I was amazed by the pace," Pumpelly said. "I am used to Daytona being a 24 hour sprint race, but this year's pace wasn't too far off of the qualifying times. Until the 86 went out it didn't subside. We came away from Daytona with good points which, helps in the championship, but we were only the class of the field for the last eight hours. In the sprint races we will have a lot tougher competition and Daytona was a reminder of that fact."
Kevin Buckler, TRG team owner, knows what it takes to win, but is always impressed with the numbers and the effort.
"Our 2009 Daytona effort was huge," Buckler said. "The car preparation started after the last speech at the banquet in September. When you manage a team comprised of 25 drivers from four different countries, five cars, two KONI cars and an army of support crew and staff it is a big task. To win the race on top of all the challenges makes it worth it. Our goal was to win and to get a one - two finish is especially satisfying. After last year, I wanted it bad. As you can see by the numbers it takes an army, and we had one. This sets us up nicely for the beginning of the season with our cars first and second in the GT points standings. It is nice not having to climb out of a hole and start the schedule with everyone chasing US at VIR at the end of April. The bottom line is that I am very proud of every single person associated with this team"
The No. 67 TRG Porsche Daytona 24 Hours Menu for Success:
506 Gallons of Sunoco Race Fuel
35 sets of tires, 140 tires total, including test days
2 set front brake pads
5 quarts of oil
24 pit stops
15 driver changes
Patrick Long led 52 laps
Jorg Bergmeister led 47
Andy Lally led 41
Justin Marks led 8
RJ Valentine led 3
67 car led 152 of the 695 total GT laps run
Spencer Pumpelly led 44 in the 66 car
Richard Lietz led 25
66 car led 149 of the 695 total GT laps run
TRG led 301 laps of the 695 total GT race laps
TRG Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona Consumption Among Five Cars:
120 pit stops
75 driver changes
175 sets of tires, 700 individual tires
25 quarts oil
10 sets front brake pads
600 lug nuts, new nuts on every stop
115 pits stops (5 cars x 23 stops each)
2,530 gallons of Sunoco race fuel (506 gallons per car x 5)
Team and Support Crew Consumables:
100 cases of water
50 cases of Gatorade
30 cases of Red Bull
25 bags of coffee
1000 lbs. of ice
200 Advil tablets
75 lbs of bananas, plus other fruit
24 cans of nuts
75 toothbrushes and toothpaste
50 boxes of Granola Bars
8 catering personnel
80 hot sandwiches at midnight of race
80 hot breakfast sandwiches
2,000 items of team uniform clothing
60 Nomex suits for crew during race
30 golf carts
8 fully equipped motor homes
4 race car and equipment transporters
72 crew and team support personnel
50 Nitrogen bottles
50 hotel rooms (50 x 6 nights 300 nights)
65 round trip air flights for race
10 rental vans
13 rental cars
15 cases of Adobe Road Wine
10 EZ-up canopies
5 fuel rigs
Round two of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series will be held at Virginia International Raceway April 24 - 23.