01/26/2020 | News release | Distributed by Public on 01/25/2020 21:50
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R team's bid to win a second consecutive Rolex 24 At Daytona is off to a solid start as the team held the lead at the one-quarter distance Saturday evening.
Renger van der Zande held a 7.668-second lead over Filipe Albuquerque's No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R at the end of six hours of racing on the 3.56-mile Daytona International Speedway circuit. Van der Zande and Kamui Kobayashi are looking for their second consecutive Rolex win in the No. 10 machine with a pair of new teammates for 2020, Ryan Briscoe and Scott Dixon.
Their lead at six hours also earned the No. 10 team the maximum five points toward the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup. The No. 31 team has four points, and the No. 6 Acura Team Penske ARX-05 driven at the six-hour mark by Simon Pagenaud has three points for running third at the quarter mark.
The pole-winning No. 77 Mazda Team Joest RT-24P shared by Oliver Jarvis, Tristan Nunez and Olivier Pla led the lion's share of the laps in the first six hours but was running fourth after six hours. It's still almost anybody's race in the lead Daytona Prototype international (DPi) class, with seven of the eight cars in class still running on the lead lap.
The LMP2 leader at six hours was the No. 52 PR1-Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA co-driven by Gabriel Aubry, Ben Keating, Simon Trummer and Nick Boulle. Aubry was at the wheel at the end of the first six-hour interval and led Nicolas Lapierre in the No. 8 Tower Motorsport by Starworks ORECA by a full lap.
The No. 52 - which now leads the LMP2 Michelin Endurance Cup standings - dominated the first six hours, leading almost every lap in the race. Harrison Newey was third in LMP2 aboard the No. 81 DragonSpeed USA ORECA.
In GT Le Mans (GTLM), Jesse Krohn headed the field in the No. 24 BMW Team RLL M8 GTE he shares with John Edwards, Augusto Farfus and Chaz Mostert. The No. 24 was 0.889 seconds ahead of Nick Tandy in the No. 911 Porsche GT Team 911 RSR, with the No. 912 Porsche of 2019 GTLM co-champion Laurens Vanthoor in third.
The No. 24 found its way to the head of the field in the fifth hour after the pair of Porsches dominated the proceedings early on. As a result, they're also atop the Michelin Endurance Cup standings.
In the GT Daytona (GTD) class, Marco Mapelli topped the class in the No. 44 GRT Magnus Lamborghini Huracán GT3 by 4.565 seconds over Cooper MacNeil in the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 488 GT3. That gives Mapelli and co-drivers Andy Lally, John Potter and Spencer Pumpelly the early Michelin Endurance Cup lead also.
Running third at six hours was another Lamborghini, the No. 58 Paul Miller Racing Huracán with Andrea Caldarelli at the controls. All of the top-three cars took turns at the head of the field in the fifth and sixth hours after the pole-winning No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R dominated the early going with drivers Zacharie Robichon, Dennis Olsen, Lars Kern and Patrick Pilet.
However, the No. 9 slowed dramatically and fell down the order but was the last car on the GTD lead lap at the end of six hours running in 11th position.