2012 Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona: Hour 19 Update

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Scott Pruett in the no.01 Ganassi Riley-BMW has taken the lead from the no.60 entry (Photo Credit: Grand-Am)

Scott Pruett in the no.01 Ganassi Riley-BMW has taken the lead from the no.60 entry (Photo Credit: Grand-Am)

The decision to spend the extra time to change brake bads on the no.60 Riley-Ford as well as change drivers from Justin Wilson to Ozz Negri allowed the no.01 Ganassi entry to slip through into to the lead as the 2012 Rolex 24 at Daytona enters its final phase.

Wilson came into the pits after completing a stint in the lead of the race for Michael Shank Racing with Curb/Agajanian, but Negri ended the hour in second place behind the Ganassi car piloted by Scott Pruett – the most successful ever driver in the Rolex Series – who took over from Joey Hand in a standard stop during the hour.

Negri trailed Pruett by a little over ten seconds, the Brazilian was unable to the make consistent gains on the defending series champion necessary to mount a challenge for the lead on track

The once dominant leader, the no.8 Starworks Motorsport Riley-Ford, continues to run third overall and in the Daytona Prototype class but lies a lap down to Pruett, and almost certainly needs a full course caution to haul itself back into contention for victory.

The no.6 MSR car continues to run in fourth, the young team continuing to cycle through their four drivers with Gustavo Yacaman taking over the car from Jorge Goncalves.

The earlier penalty for the Magnus Racing Porsche has brought the no.67 TRG Porsche right into contention for GT class honours and the car led at the close of the nineteenth hour with Spencer Pumpelly at the wheel.

Pumpelly had fallen to fourth in class after making a pitstop but after he passed Ronnie Bremer in the no.57 Stevenson Camaro on the track and the Magnus Porsche while it was stopped in the pits, Richard Lietz handing the car over to Rene Rast, the TRG man was promoted to second.

Second became first when Andrew Davis brought the Brumos Racing Porsche in for a brake change in the pits. Just as in the Daytona Prototype class the extra time needed to effect the change was enough to facilitate a potentially vital change of lead as the hours tick down towards the checkered flag.

The top five in the GT classes also feature the no.63 Risi Competizione Ferrari 458 or Olivier Beretta, Andrea Bertolini and Toni Vilander, another pretender to what is surely Porsche's throne given their dominance thus far.

50th Rolex 24 at Daytona DP class standings after Hour 19

1. #01 Chip Ganassi Racing – Hand/Pruett/Rahal/Rojas
2. #60 Michael Shank Racing – Allmendinger/Negri/Pew/Wilson
3. #8 Starworks Motorsport – Dalziel/Luhr/McNish/Popow/Potolicchio
4. #6 Michael Shank Racing – Goncalves/McDowell/Nasr/Yacaman
5. #5 Action Express Racing – Donahue/Fittipladi/Law

50th Rolex 24 at Daytona GT class standings after Hour 19

1. #67 TRG – Bertheau/Bleekemolen/Goossens/Henzler/Pumpelly
2. #59 Brumos Racing – Davis/Haywwod/Keen/Lieb
3. #44 Magnus Racing – Lally/Lietz/Potter/Rast
4. #63 Risi Competizione – Beretta/Bertolini/Vilander
5. #57 Stevenson Motorsport – Bremer/Edwards/Liddell

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James is our Diet-Coke fuelled writer and has been with TCF pretty much since day 1, he can be found frequenting twitter at @_JBroomhead
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