Daytona II: Doran Racing race report

Late-Race Problems Strike Both The Loctite 44 and the Crown Royal Special Reserve 77 In Rolex Action Thursday Night at Daytona DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., June 30 - Both of the Doran Racing cars were running well in the Brumos Porsche 250 Thursday...

Late-Race Problems Strike Both The Loctite 44 and the Crown Royal Special Reserve 77 In Rolex Action Thursday Night at Daytona

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., June 30 - Both of the Doran Racing cars were running well in the Brumos Porsche 250 Thursday night at Daytona International Speedway but unfortunately both had problems at the very end of the 250-mile, 70-lap, two-hour-and-45-minute Rolex series race.

The Doran Labonte Racing Loctite/Henkel/Daytona USA DORAN JE4 Pontiac No. 44 of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup stars Bobby and Terry Labonte ended up 15th both overall and in the Daytona Prototype class after a spin at the very end of the race.

The Doran Racing Crown Royal Special Reserve DORAN JE4 Lexus No. 44 of Fabrizio Gollin and Matteo Bobbi was at high as third at one point but ended up 22nd in the Daytona Prototype class and 39th overall after a right-rear suspension piece broke just 11 laps from the checkered.

The race, which was run under extremely humid conditions and rain at a couple of points, was televised live on SPEED.

Terry Labonte started 11th in the No. 44 car and drove for the first 23 laps, pitting under a full-course caution that was brought out when the Spirit of Daytona No. 07 stopped on the course. Bobby Labonte drove the remaining 47 laps in that car.

Gollin started eighth in the No. 77 car, which did its driver change at the same time as the No. 44.

Both cars ran together in ninth and tenth and then eighth and ninth in the early going. The No. 77 was fifth and the No. 44 was eighth when a full-course yellow waved on lap 36 to pick up the No. 22 BMW of Ian James. The No. 77 didn't make a pit stop at that point and Bobbi moved up to third, but the No. 44 pitted under the yellow for fuel and dropped back to 14th.

Then the Howard-Boss Motorsports No. 06 went nose-first into a tire barrier in the International Horseshoe and brought out another full-course caution, so both the No. 44 and the No. 77 pitted again under that yellow. The latter got four fresh tires and fuel while the No. 44 got fuel only that time.

With one hour left in the race both cars had enough fuel to go the distance, and the No. 77 was 12th and the No. 44 was 13th. Since approximately six cars ahead of them were going to have to pit for fuel yet the team's strategy was excellent, but their problems at the very end dropped them down in the standings.

Bobbi did an excellent job of keeping the car out of the wall when the suspension piece broke, and both of the Labonte brothers said they had fun.

Earlier in the day Gollin qualified eighth with a lap in 1:47.359 (119.375 mph), while Terry Labonte qualified 11th with a lap at 1:47.906 (118.770 mph).

For more information, please see doranracing.com, crownroyal.com and loctite.com. Matteobobbi.com has information on that driver, while Gollin's Web site is at fabriziogollin.com. Bobby Labonte's Web site is at bobbylabonte.com, and information on Terry Labonte can be found at hendrickmotorsport.com.

Other interesting information can be found at grandamerican.com, daytonainternationalspeedway.com, speedtv.com and restartcommunications.com.

Quotes follow:

Terry Labonte: "The car wasn't bad. It was a little loose, and the track was wet to start with.

"I was having fun and keeping up with the pack real good, but I guess I used up my back tires a little bit because it got a little loose at the end.

"The track is nice; they did a nice job with the repaving.

"I just think this is a cool series.  I've followed it a little bit here the
past few years, and it's really come a long way.  They've really done an
unbelievable job with it.  It's kind of neat to be part of it."

Bobby Labonte: "We pitted there a couple of time to get fuel, and I ran 38 laps on the tires there at the end. I'm just not used to the road course here. On the restart they'd jump by me and then I'd just have to just try to run consistent laps to stay with them.

"At the very end a guy spun out in front of me and I spun to miss him. I guess there was water in the fenders or something because when I went to slow down it just got out from under me and I lost two spots.

"The car wasn't too bad. It was a little loose at the end but that's because I ran so many laps on those tires. The brakes were a little spongy, but really the car wasn't bad."

Fabrizio Gollin: "Our car was good.  We wanted to be very careful in the
beginning so we could push at the end.  The brakes were good, but the track was
slippery because it is so humid.  Still, the car was fun to drive."

Matteo Bobbi: "We broke a suspension piece. We had good fuel strategy, but unfortunately things didn't go in our favor. I was lucky that I didn't crash when the suspension piece broke."

-dr-

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Bobby Labonte , Terry Labonte , Fabrizio Gollin , Ian James , Matteo Bobbi
Teams Doran Racing