Jani, Rebellion Racing Top First Day at Roar Before 24

Rebellion Racing driver Neel Jani led the field during both practice sessions on the opening day of the Roar Before the Rolex 24.

The Porsche factory LMP1 driver clocked a 1:39.160s time during the afternoon runs to put the Rebellion-entered ORECA 07 on top at Daytona International Speedway.

Jani also led the way during the morning session, turning in a 1:39.164s effort. He will be joined by fellow World Endurance Championship regulars Sebastien Buemi, Stephane Sarrazin and Nick Heidfeld for the Rolex 24 race on January 28-29.

The Daytona enduro marks the start of the 12-round IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship, as well as the four-round North American Endurance Cup.

Roar Before the 24 Session 1 Result

Roar Before the 24 Session 2 Result

Second quickest on the opening day of the weekend-long Roar test was Misha Goikhberg in the JDC-Miller Motorsports ORECA 07.

Goikhberg fell 0.274 seconds short of Jani’s time with a 1:39.434s attempt.

Third overall and fastest of the DPi runners was Ricky Taylor in the Taylor family-run Cadillac, who clocked a 1:39.496s best during the morning runs.

LMP2 machinery occupied four out of the top five positions on day one, with Andres Gutierrez locking the PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports Ligier in fourth with a 1:40.133s time and Nicolas Lapierre rounding out the top five in the DragonSpeed ORECA. The times came in spite of a balance of performance adjustment prior to the test which saw the Mazda and Nissan DPis gain increases in boost while the Cadillac DPi received a larger air restrictor.

In GT Le Mans, Corvette Racing’s Jan Magnussen led a closely bunched field with a time of 1:44.760s.

That was enough to put the Danish stalwart 0.013 seconds ahead of Dirk Mueller in the #66 Ford GT.

Ford’s contingent of four cars featured heavily at the top of the timesheets, with Andy Priaulx recording the third fastest lap in the #69 car.

Oliver Gavin split part of the Chip Ganassi-run entries in fourth, as Richard Westbrook (#67) and Billy Johnson (#68) continued the blue oval’s impressive showing at the Roar so far.

The fastest non-Ford/Corvette runner was the Porsche 911 RSR driven by Patrick Pilet, who set a 1:45.246s time.

Elsewhere, Prototype Challenge saw Johnny Mowlem set the class pace in the #26 BAR1 Motorsports ORECA, while in GT Daytona Andrew Davis set the fastest lap in the Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 LMS GT3.

The Roar Before the Rolex 24 continues with three practice sessions (including a night run) on Saturday, January 7.