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2017 Daytona 24 Preview: Cadillac Prototype On Pole For Rolex 24 At Daytona
Posted by: ASkyler on Jan 28, 2017 - 06:27 AM
Feature Articles
2017 Daytona 24 Preview: Cadillac Prototype On Pole For Rolex 24 At Daytona


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Today the strongest collection of racing cars and drivers in recent years will line up for this year’s 55th edition of the Rolex 24 At DAYTONA, in what is the ultimate race against time. The 55 car strong field will start the race at 14:30 local time on Saturday 28 January, which marks the start of the 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

An all-new field of Prototype (P) race cars make their world debut this week in what is referred to as America’s toughest and most prestigious endurance race. These machines, the fastest and most technologically advanced that have ever graced the Championship, will battle to cross the finish line first on Sunday afternoon. The new regulations alongside the gruelling nature of this 24-hour race exemplify Rolex’s continued quest for excellence and perfection, demanding the greatest perseverance and durability from man and machine in extreme conditions.

 

Yesterday, teams competing in this year’s event took to the famous Daytona International Speedway for the first day of racing action. Joao Barbosa in the #5 Mustang Sampling Racing dominated the early stages of qualifying in one of the new Cadillac DPi Prototypes; whilst the sister No. 31 machine, driven by Dane Cameron made a late charge for pole position, it was Jaoa Barbosa’s time of 1:36.903 that was quickest and the #5 car will take the green flag in tomorrow’s race. #38 Performance Tech Motorsports will lead the Prototype Challenge (PC) class with #66 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing the fastest GT Le Mans (GTLM) race car and #51 Spirit of Race the quickest GT Daytona (GTD) team.

A truly international event, Daytona always brings in a strong collection of driver line-ups including; Jeff Gordon, four-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Champion; Sébastien Buemi, former Formula 1® driver and Scott Pruett, five-time winner of the Rolex 24 At DAYTONA. These leading drivers are all vying for the Rolex 24 At DAYTONA trophy and motor sport’s most coveted award, the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona watch.

This year Dario Franchitti, three-time winner of the Indianapolis 500 and 2008 Rolex 24 At DAYTONA winner, will perform duties as Grand Marshal and deliver the famous command "drivers, start your engines". The legendary racing driver says: "I’m honored to serve as the Grand Marshal at this year’s Rolex 24 and I’m excited about performing the starting orders. The Rolex 24 At Daytona has an incredible history and demands so much from the drivers and teams - it is a true race against time demanding the utmost durability and performance."

Five-time Rolex 24 At DAYTONA champion, Hurley Haywood will serve as the Honorary Starter and said: "I spent 40 years taking the green flag but never throwing it. It’s exciting to be here. There are a lot of great-looking cars and a great driver line-up."

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