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DragonSpeed Defends Rolex 24 LMP2 Win

DragonSpeed has earned consecutive Rolex 24 LMP2 class triumphs…

Photo: Barry Cantrell/IMSA

DragonSpeed earned a second consecutive Rolex 24 LMP2 class win courtesy of a near-flawless run from drivers Harrison Newey, Ben Hanley, Henrik Hedman, and Colin Braun.

The defending race-winning squad took over the lead in the 19th hour and never let it go from there en route to the win.

The lone setback of note for the No. 81 Oreca 07 Gibson came in the fifth hour when Braun was forced to limp back to the pits with a right-rear puncture.

This year’s victory built on the team’s 2019 triumph in the twice-around-the-clock classic that saw Sebastian Saavedra, Pastor Maldonado, Ryan Cullen, and Roberto Gonzalez survive a race of attrition to earn the win.

By contrast, this edition of the race was a clean one with only one major incident involving LMP2 class cars.

The No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Oreca dominated most of the race from pole, starting with an impressive opening stanza from Ben Keating.

The first chink in the No. 52 car’s armor appeared with 6 hours and 20 minutes to go when wall contact during Keating’s stint led to a lengthy pit stop for repairs which cost them three laps.

The Texan and his PR1/Mathiasen teammates Simon Trummer, Nick Boulle, and Gabriel Aubry managed to claw back two laps but couldn’t complete the recovery drive, ultimately settling for second in class.

The No. 18 Era Motorsport Oreca 07 Gibson of Kyle Tilley, Dwight Merriman, Ryan Lewis, and Nic Minassian completed the class podium in third.

Tower Motorsport by Starworks’ Ryan Dalziel, David Heinemeier-Hansson, John Farano and Nicolas Lapierre finished fourth after several problems along the way.

The car was pushed behind the wall in the ninth hour with a mechanical issue, then were forced back to the garage in the 13th hour to repair damage caused by porpoising in cool temperatures overnight.

Performance Tech Motorsports’ Oreca pulled into the pits in the final hour and did not return.

RESULTS: Rolex 24 at Daytona 

Ryan Myrehn is an Indianapolis-based journalist and sportscaster, covering IMSA and Pirelli World Challenge. Myrehn, a graduate of DePauw University, is also the host of Sportscar365's “Double Stint” Podcast.

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