Rolex Series

2013 Rolex 24 At Daytona: Hour 18 Update

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2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona (Photo Credit: Rolex/Tom O'Neal)

The fog was finally beginning to clear as the 2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona reached the start of its 18th hour, with the race going green again after an hour and forty-three minutes under safety car conditions. The race overall race lead was still held by Ryan Dalziel‘s Starworks with Alex Popow Ford Riley ahead of the #01 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates as racing began once again.

The first half of the hour saw a relatively even spread between the top four of the Daytona Prototypes, with Dalziel keeping a steady margin over Scott Pruett, who was also managing the gap back to the #9 Action Express Racing Corvette DP of Joao Barbosa.

After just 15 minutes of green-flag racing, the caution flag flew for the twelfth time of the race. The standings were shuffled once again due to pitstops under the safety car, with the major move being Dalziel handing the lead of the race over to Pruett as he dived into the pits.

Racing resumed with six and a half hours left in the race, with Pruett trying to keep the #10 VelocityWW Corvette DP of Jordan Taylor behind, whilst the top five were separated by less than one second at the line.

In the GT class it was Markus Winkelhock who led the pack ahead of the #44 Magnus Racing Porsche GT3. Once racing continued, Winkelhock found himself in a fierce battle for the class lead with the #63 Scuderia Corsa Michelotti Ferrari 458, piloted by Olivier Beretta.

Winkelhock was let off, though, as the caution flag was thrown just as Beretta closed the gap to just four tenths of a second.

As racing continued, the #13 Audi Sport Customer Racing/Rum Bum Racing Audi R8 dropped through the field with Christopher Haase at the helm as Anthony Lazzaro led the way in the #69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD with Ferrari 458 before being overtaken by the MOMO/NGT Motorsport Porsche of Patrick Pilet in the closing minutes of the hour.

It was business as usual in the GX class as Napleton Racing just ticked off the laps as they continued their dominance of the class.

2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona Daytona Prototype standings after 18 hours

1 – #01 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates BMW Riley

2 – #9 Action Express Racing Corvette DP

3 – #10 VelocityWW Corvette DP

4 – #90 Spirit of Daytona Racing Corvette DP

5 – #2 Starworks with Alex Popow Ford Riley

2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona GT standings after 18 hours

1 – #30 MOMO/NGT Motorsport Porsche GT3 Cup

2 – #69 AIM Autosport Team FXDD with Ferrari Ferrari 458

3 – #44 Magnus Racing Porsche GT3 Cup

4 – #24 Audi Sport Customer Racing/AJR Audi R8 GRAND-AM

5 – #63 Scuderia Corsa Michelotto Ferrari 458

2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona GX standings after 18 hours

1 – #16 Napleton Racing Porsche Cayman

2 – #22 Bullet Racing Porsche Cayman GX.R

3 – #38 BGB Motorsports Porsche Cayman GX.R

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Based in Mid-Wales, James joined TCF at the start of the 2013 season, covering a range of disciplines, predominantly Motorcycle Road Racing and NASCAR. Follow him on Twitter @JCCharman
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