Kimball’s win tops IndyCar entrants at Rolex 24

IndyCar, IndyCar commentary — By on January 27, 2013 9:20 pm
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The checkered flag has fallen over the 51st running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona, and the IZOD IndyCar Series drivers entered experienced varying success ranging from early departure to walking away with a winner’s watch. Detailed accounts can be found in the list below.

Bold = IICS drivers

DP CLASS

01     Chip Ganassi / Felix Sabates — Charlie Kimball, Juan Pablo Montoya, Scott Pruett, Memo Rojas
The two Ganassi entries were unquestionably the class of the field this year with straight-line speed that no one else could match. While the #02 car suffered some misfortune, the #01 team won the day and gave Scott Pruett his fifth victory, leaving him tied with Hurley Haywood for the most overall Rolex 24 wins of all time. Entered in his first 24, Charlie Kimball was mostly along for the ride — his only stint in the overnight hours saw him set the effort back somewhat by taking an off-road jaunt. Still, being able to claim a win after a first crack at Daytona is definitely worth adding to the resume.

02     Chip Ganassi / Felix Sabates — Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti, Joey Hand, Jamie McMurray, Scott Pruett
Early on, this effort joined the #01 in appearing untouchable. However, the #02 ran into bad luck in the second half of the event. During hour 15, Jamie McMurray had a strange incident where he made a mistake and brushed the wall while leaving the pits, setting the team back seven laps. They soldiered on but eventually left the race with about three and a half hours left after the car lost drive and efforts to repair it were unsuccessful. They finished 37th overall.

2     Starworks — Sébastien Bourdais, Ryan Dalziel, Allan McNish, Alex Popow
A race that started strong unraveled for the #2 team when they lost 15 laps while repairing a broken throttle linkage and brake line with only two hours to go. They settled for a 6th-place finish.

10     VelocityWW — Max Angelelli, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Jordan Taylor
This team put forth a quiet and consistent effort that could have left them in a strong position to capitalize on fuel strategy late in the event. Unfortunately, the #01 simply had more power and Juan Pablo Montoya was able to overtake Angelelli on the racetrack in the waning laps, leaving the #10 Wayne Taylor Racing team to settle for a hard-earned 2nd place finish.

42     Team Sahlen — Dane Cameron, Bruno Junqueira, Wayne Nonnamaker, Simon Pagenaud
A mid-race repair to the drivetrain left this effort fighting to make up positions until the end. They ultimately finished 21st overall.

60     Michael Shank Racing — AJ Allmendinger, Marcos Ambrose, Oswaldo Negri, John Pew, Justin Wilson
This team came back from a seven-lap deficit not once but twice — the first time for repairs to the suspension after AJ Allmendinger took a very early off-road excursion, and the second for a broken fuel pump — and found itself in the lead pack on the final restart. With the Dinger again at the wheel and clearly driving for nothing less than a second-consecutive win, he attempted a pass to the outside of João Barbosa in the #9 car and was pushed into the grass. The #9 entry was penalized for avoidable contact (a call that proved controversial with viewers at home), but the damage was done and the group was forced to settle for 3rd place at the end of a hard-fought day for Michael Shank Racing.

 

GT Class

21     Dener Motorsport — Rubens Barrichello, Nonô Figueiredo, Felipe Giaffone, Tony Kanaan, Ricardo Maurício
Tony Kanaan and Rubens Barrichello teamed up to bring two full all-Brazilian entries — crew members included — to the Rolex 24. Unfortunately, both entries were plagued with sour engines from the beginning. The #20 car finished the day 45th overall, and the #21 car, in which Kanaan and Barrichello were both entered, ended up 46th.

 

GX Class

70     Mazdaspeed/Speedsource — Jonathon Bomarito, Marino Franchitti, James Hinchcliffe, Sylvain Tremblay
The new GX class, created to encourage research and development in alternative fuels and technologies, saw two manufacturers step to the plate for the Rolex 24: Porsche and Mazda. The Mazdas suffered technical failures very early, and all three entries were out of the running by the fourth hour. Never one to fail to capitalize on an opportunity, however, James Hinchcliffe paid a visit to the SPEED commentary booth to unleash his Kimi Räikkönen impression and delight the fans watching at home.

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