2012 Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona: Hour 9 Update

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Action Express Racing no.9 Corvette DP ( Photo Credit: Rolex/Stephan Cooper)

Action Express Racing no.9 Corvette DP ( Photo Credit: Rolex/Stephan Cooper)

Despite extending their lead during the prolonged green flag running a brake pad and disc change on the no.8 Starworks Motorsport Riley-Ford was enough to drop it a lap off the lead, which Juan Pablo Montoya held at the end of the ninth hour of the 2012 Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Ryan Dalziel – the man who put the no.8 car on pole position – had pulled out a lead or nearly fifteen seconds at its peak, but the extra time taken to complete work during a round of green flag pitstops meant that new driver Lucas Luhr returned to the track a lap down on the top three overall.

Montoya took the lead from Scott Pruett in the sister no.1 car, while Felipe Nasr moved in between the two Ganassi machines to take second place. The Brazilian, who won his drive through the Sunoco Rolex 24 at Daytona Challenge, briefly looked like he would be able to challenge Montoya for the lead, before the Colombian pulled out a gap of several seconds.

The same green flag period that had allowed Dalziel to build up a lead had also provided the time for Robin Liddell to gain a 30 second lead at the head of the Gt class in the Stevenson Motorsport Camaro.

Liddell's lead survived the round of stops – John Edwards taking over responsibility for the no.57 – intact, the Camaro moving back into the lead once the Magnus and Brumos cars had taken their own spots. However, the hour was not all good for Stevenson's two car team the no.75 car pitting with potential suspension or diveshaft problems, mechanics swarming over the rear of the car.

With only minutes left in the hour Edwards was called into serve a 110 second penalty in the pits for passing the pace car. Needless to say the delay wiped out the lead they had previously held, handing GT honours back to the best two Porsches in the hands of Rene Rast (Magnus) and Leh Keen (Brumos)

50th Rolex 24 at Daytona DP class standings after Hour 9

#02 Chip Ganassi Racing – Dixon/Franchitti/McMurray/Montoya
#6 Michael Shank Racing – Goncalves/McDowell/Nasr/Yacaman
#01 Chip Ganassi Racing – Hand/Pruett/Rahal/Rojas
#5 Action Express Racing – Donahue/Fittipladi/Law
#90 Spirit of Daytona – Garcia/Gavin/Magnussen/Westbrook

50th Rolex 24 at Daytona GT class standings after Hour 9

#44 Magnus Racing – Lally/Lietz/Potter/Rast
#59 Brumos Racing – Davis/Haywwod/Keen/Lieb
#88 Autohaus Motorsports – Edwards/Marsh/Milner/Taylor
#67 TRG – Bertheau/Bleekemolen/Goossens/Henzler/Pumpelly
#23 Alex Job Racing – Collard/Holzer/Leitzinger/MacNeill

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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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