Tristan Vautier led Kevin Magnussen as Cadillacs ran 1-2 at the four-hour mark of the Rolex 24 At Daytona. Vautier, in the No. 5 JDC-Miller Motorsport Cadillac DPi-V.R, held a mere five second margin over the former Formula 1 driver making his American sports car debut in Chip Ganassi Racing’s No. 01 Cadillac.
Third was Ricky Taylor in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura ARX-05, with IndyCar driver Alexander Rossi – who raced an Acura for Team Penske last year – awaiting his turn at the wheel.
— IMSA After Dark (@IMSA) January 30, 2021
Mike Conway was seventh in the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac after taking over from Chase Elliott. The reigning NASCAR Cup Series champion was unhappy with his opening stint:
“I never could get a good rhythm and find a good pace to run,” Elliott said. “I felt way better in my last practice. I need to go to work here and try to be better in my next stint; I put these guys way too far behind. There’s a long way to go, but I hate to put them in a big box like that.”
A scary moment in the pits for Bill Auberlen came just moments after he stepped out of the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3. Aidan Read was leaving the pits just after the fuel hose was detached, splashing Auberlen in the face with fuel. Fortunately, team owner Will Turner reported later that the veteran driver was OK.
Dr. Lance Willsey, running second in LMP3, spun late in the hour in Turn 5 driving the No. 33 Sam Creech Motorsports Ligier JS P320. Jesse Krohn, driver of the No. 24 BMW, was assessed a drive-through penalty for incident responsibility.
Steign Schothorst took the No. 111 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini Huracan behind the wall at the four-hour mark. That was one of the cars to beat in the GTD class where Indy Dontje leading in the No. 57 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG had take the lead from Kyle Kirkwood in the No. 14 Vasser Sullivan Lexus. Third was Trent Hindman in the No. 16 Wright Motorsports Porsche.
Hello darkness my old friend 🎶
— IMSA After Dark (@IMSA) January 31, 2021
After four hours, Jordan Taylor (No. 3) led teammate Nick Tandy (No. 4) as Corvettes ran 1-2 in GTLM, followed by the No. 25 BMW of Philipp Eng.
Tristan Nunez led LMP2 in the No. 11 WIN Autosport ORECA LMP2 07-Gibson, followed by Scott Huffaker in the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA and Tim Buret in the No. 9 Tower Motorsport ORECA.
Spencer Pigot led LMP3 in the No. 74 Riley Motorsport Ligier JS P320, followed by Willsey and George Kurtz in the No. 54 CORE autosport Ligier.