Rolex 24 8-Hour Report: Pontiac Up Front In DP And GT ...
Rolex 24 8-Hour Report: Pontiac Up Front In DP And GT
#64 TRG GTO.R Led GT Class Until Suspension Problem; #2 Howard-Boss Motorsports Daytona Prototype in Fourth
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The reliability factor is coming into play at Daytona International Speedway as a third of the Rolex 24 At Daytona has now passed. With it, several DP and GT cars have now retired due to crash damage or mechanical problems. Running ahead of the pack were Pontiac's two TRG GTO.Rs until suspension problems forced the #64 car into a spin and off the track - and to the garage for repairs. The #65 GTO.R has since moved into second and is gunning for the lead.
"I had no indication that anything was wrong and I went to the brakes in turn one like I normally did," said Kelly Collins, co-driver of the #64 car. "The car just made a clunk and instantly snapped sideways and went for a spin. We've got some damage to the floor and suspension but we'll be back out - I can't yet say when."
"We led for a while and our car has been trouble free," said Marc Bunting, co-driver of the #65 GTO.R. "We've been running consistent laps and we're trying to stay out there until the morning when we can turn it on a little bit."
The top Pontiac of the Daytona Prototype class since the withdrawal of the SunTrust Racing team due to crash damage has been the #2 Howard-Boss Motorsports Pontiac Crawford of Danica Patrick, Rusty Wallace, Jan Lammers and Alan McNish.
"The circuit is coming to the car," said McNish. "The more rubber that goes down the better the car feels in terms of stability. We're able to run a very consistent and strong pace. From that point of view, for the moment we're trying to keep pushing and not take any risks at all. We're a little bit out of sync on strategy but we're happy with how we're doing at the moment."
Experiencing mechanical problems and withdrawing from the race was the #12 Lowe's Fernandez Racing Pontiac Riley and the #50 Blackforest Motorsports Ford Crawford along with a number of GT cars.