2015 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona: Hours 9-12 – Half gone, half to go


As the competitors completed one full loop of the clock face, the action was still as intense as ever Jordan Taylor dodged survived multiple caution periods to end the 12th hour on top in the #10 Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP.

This four hour shift seemed to see competitors settle into their rhythm with battles up and down the field getting into a state of dicing back and forth rather than many decisive moves being made.

In the prototype class, the  battle at the front was almighty – the #5 Action Express Racing DP was having a good scrap with the Wayne Taylor car until the Action Express machine slowed with what was later diagnosed as a wiring issue in the fuel pump.

A battle that wasn’t eventually hamstrung until a few hours later was that of the GTLM machines – especially the two factory and the one Falken Porsches as well as the pair of Corvettes and the BMW Team RLL Z4s. Always seemingly linked in a chain of five cars, all the competitors were not giving inches to each other never mind car lengths.

However, a chunk of that field would be reduced in the 12th hour as both the #911 and #912 factory Porsche 911s came into strife as the #911 of Marc Lieb tangled with the #007 TRG Aston Martin over the curbs and in an effort to avoid more contact Lieb clipped the #912 of Earl Bamber. That saw all three cars go behind the wall to fix varying degrees of damage.

In GTD and PC the lead was changing so regularly it was hard to keep up. In the Prototype Challenge class the top two – the CORE Autosport car and the PR1/Mathiaesen machine – both within one lap of each other with both 10 laps ahead of the next in class so it is fair to say most of the fights were between those two.

GT Daytona saw the #63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari piloted by Bill Sweedler, Townsend Bell, Anthony Lazzaro and Jeff Segal hold out ahead of the Riley Technologies Viper and the Paul Miller Racing Audi R8 LMS.

With some of the GTLM front runners spending time in the pits, the top three at the halfway point was filled by the #4 and #3 Corvettes as well as the strong running #17 Falken Tires Porsche.

Finally Prototype and as mentioned at the top, Wayne Taylor Racing held the balance of power at the top of the time sheets but the two Ganassi Ford EcoBoost Rileys were making sure the Corvette DP didn’t have it easy.