The #60 Meyer Shank Racing Acura survives to win the 61st running of the Daytona 24 Hours, after a race where the key to winning is attrition.
It was a four-car fight with just one hour of the race to go with it being like the years of DPI with Cadillac and Acura going toe to toe like in years before this GTP era.
In the end, Acura came out on top, with a one-two headed by the Meyer Shank car.
In LMP2, the #55 Proton Competition took the win in a class which was closely fought throughout the race, which saw them take it from the #04 Crowdstrike car by 0.016.
The LMP2 class also saw the biggest crash of the race with Anders Fjordbach going hard into the tire wall at the Le Mans Chicane, as he took too much of the right-hand kerb when turning into the corner.
The AWA #17 Duqueine takes the win in a largely separated LMP3 class which saw them ahead of their closest rival being a full 13 laps behind them.
It did look like Sean Creech Motorsport’s race to lose, but when they came into the pits for a scheduled stop on Sunday morning the car got stuck in gear, which left them in the pits.
In GTD, the winner was the #27 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT3 and in GTD Pro the win went to the #79 WeatherTech Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 in a race which came down to ten cars on the same lap fighting for the win with just an hour to go.
BMW was the weakest car in the GTP class with them being visibly much slower from the point the race started.
They were also failing to put the endurance in the endurance race, with the #25 BMW pulling over to the side of the road just off of turn 12 after just an hour of racing, and then pulling into the garages again with 17 hours 35 mins to go in the race.
On the other hand, the #24 car was fairing a bit better until Sunday morning when the car went into the garages, for the rear brakes as they were fully replaced after losing time on a race restart, which dropped the car to seventh in class.
The lessons from Daytona are clear, Porsche Penske are very fast, yet vulnerable, with them leading at some points of the race, but their reliability ultimately being their downfall.
The #7 car was the first Porsche to have reliability issues in the race with the car slowing an hour and ten minutes into the race, but then looked to have reset the electrics in the car and went on its way again. Then with 18 hours and 32 minutes to go, it went into the pits for 35 mins due to an electrical issue.
Stronger was the #6 car with it taking the fight to the leaders, and looking competitive, which was until the 3 hours to go mark, with the car going out in a major way.
It started off with the car stopping twice coming into turn one, with both occasions looking so identical you could be mistaken for thinking it was a replay, then as the car exited turn 9 white smoke started filling out the back of the car, with it being a result of an expected drive train issue.
Cadillac came alive in the race after a quiet test last week with them arguably having the strongest cars reliability-wise at the event.
The one counter to this argument was the Whelen Engineering Racing #31 car, which was extremely quick, and was really leading the charge for Cadillac in the race, until with 9 hours to go the car started to slow, because of issues with either the car’s gearbox or suspension failing.
Whereas the two Cadillac racing cars have been on pace the whole race with them both being consistently in the fight for the win.
The only issue was for the #01 car having a nail-biting moment as it was hit from behind by an LMP3 while trying to avoid the Tower Motorsports LMP2, which resulted in the Cadillac having rear-end damage, which resulted in the rear of the car being replaced.
The Acura’s have been phenomenally quick throughout the race with the manufacturer being arguably the quickest in the field.
Some of the commentators have been referring to the #60 Meyer Shank racing, as Road Runner as the car just disappears into the distance on restarts and has been the car to beat throughout this race with it being super quick, and this ultimately lead the car to victory
In comparison, the Konica Minolta car #06 Acura hasn’t been as quick throughout the race with it falling a couple of laps behind at one point, but with three hours to go, it went on a surge to get back onto the leading lap.
The only issue that both these cars have faced is a problem with the engine oil which has resulted in them having to take extra stops to replenish the gearbox pressure levels.