Rolex 24, Hour 6: Derani hits the front for Action Express
Kamui Kobayashi continued Wayne Taylor Racing teammate Fernando Alonso’s good work in the Rolex 24 at Daytona, but Action Express Racing’s decision to not pit Pipo Derani under yellow jumped the Brazilian to the front after six hours.
A collision involving Mark Kvamme’s PR1/Mathiasen LMP2 Oreca and Juan Piedrahita’s JDC-Miller Cadillac DPi-V.R brought out the full-course caution just before the end of the sixth hour.
That negated Kobayashi’s well-crafted 15sec lead in the #10 Cadillac DPi-V.R, and while he and the majority of Prototype drivers elected to pit, Derani in the #31 AXR Cadillac was left out in order to score North American Endurance Cup points for leading after six hours.
Derani and Kobayashi burst away on the restart, chased hard by Juan Pablo Montoya, but the other Acura Team Penske ARX-05 of Ricky Taylor locked up its brakes into the International Hairpin, collided with Timo Bernhard’s #77 Mazda and spun around.
That promoted the other Mazda of Jonathan Bomarito - which had earlier been delayed when Harry Tincknell was tipped into a spin by Katherine Legge's Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX - into fifth and Rubens Barrichello into sixth driving the surviving JDC-Miller Cadillac.
Roberto Gonzalez now leads LMP2 in the DragonSpeed Oreca ahead of teammate Ben Hanley, while Robert Masson runs third for Performance Tech Motorsports.
In GT Le Mans, Nick Tandy’s Porsche 911 RSR is pressuring Oliver Gavin in the #4 Corvette C7.R, being watched assiduously by the pursuing James Calado (Risi Competizione Ferrari 488) and Augusto Farfus (BMW M8).
Felipe Fraga leads the GT Daytona division in the Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT3 from the Land Motorsport Audi R8 LMS of Ricardo Feller and Maxi Buhk in another Mercedes, that of P1 Motorsports.
Nick Boulle's Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3-R is fourth, while the #57 Acura NSX of Meyer Shank Racing has moved into fifth, now driven by Simona de Silvestro.
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