The 12th hour of the Rolex 24 At Daytona ended with flames and the 13th began with fireworks on track as we entered the second half. A restart and a hectic pit cycle for the Acura GTP machines set the tone.
When the yellow flag flew, both Acuras made their way to the pits but the No. 10 Wayne Taylor racing ARX-06 dipped behind the wall and into the garage, returned to the track, then back behind the wall again to rectify a broken oil fill tube the team encountered when cycling the engine oil. The No. 60 Meyer Shank Racing Acura ARX-06 pitted at the same time for similar fluid maintenance at the rear end of the car, but accomplished it strictly in their own box.
The mechanical drama put the No. 10 a lap down when the green flag flew with the MSR team taking the setback in stride with Simon Pagenaud behind the wheel, fighting their way back to the front.
A three-way battle between the MSR Acura and the Cadillacs of Alex Lynn and Pipo Derani opened the door for the No. 60 to make its way up to the front.
The restart allowed both factory Cadillacs to get back on the lead lap as well as the No. 24 BMW M Team RLL car, further bunching up the GTP field.
In GTD PRO, the No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 296 GT3 announced its retirement due to floor damage suffered earlier in the race.
Two penalties were handed out during the hour. Both the No. 13 AWA LMP3 machine and the No. 32 Team Korthoff Mercedes entry were both handed drive-through penalties for jumped restarts.
Class leaders after the 13th hour:
GTP: Simon Pagenaud No. 60 Meyer Shank Racing Acura
LMP2: Esteban Gutierrez No. 04 Crowdstrike Racing by APR Oreca
LMP3: Wayne Boyd No. 17 AWA Duqueine
GTD PRO: David Pittard No. 23 Heart of Racing Aston Martin
GTD: Daniel Morad No. 57 Winward Racing Mercedes
Notes and quotes
“This race have become true 24 hour sprint races, and you have to stay out of trouble somehow.” Hugh Plumb of the No. 64 Team TGF/TF Sport Aston Martin
“I don’t even know what time it is; it could be 8:00 in the morning for all I know!” Alex Quinn of the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen ORECA LMP2