Daytona 24 Hours 2015
Daytona 24 Hours 2015

Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 – Report and Photos

The Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 was held January 24-25 at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. The 12-turn, 3.56-mile track is made up of portions of the NASCAR tri-oval and an infield road course.

Excitement at the 53rd Rolex 24 At Daytona went down to the wire. An engaging battle between the leading Prototypes was kept alive to the last by an incident bringing the safety car onto the track with 15 minutes to go. Scott Dixon held off the challenge of last year’s winner, #5 Action Express Racing to win; #02 Chip Ganassi racing eventually winning out by 1.333 seconds. In PC class, #52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsport was all but handed victory when longtime leader #54 crashed out with less than 20 minutes to go. The #3 Corvette Racing held on to win GTLM, and in GTD it was #93 Riley Motorsport. Along with their respective trophies, all winning drivers were rewarded for their herculean efforts with the ultimate in motor sport prizes, a Rolex Cosmograph Daytona.

It was race of tremendous attrition as some 19 cars failed to finish including cars that seemed in contention until the final moments. With four hours to go there was contested racing in all classes. As the clock clicked inexorably towards the 24 hour mark, and the pace quickened, the cracks began to show in drivers, machinery and strategy.

Chip Ganassi Racing’s win makes the team the most successful at the Rolex 24 At Daytona with six wins to their name. According to team owner Chip Ganassi: “The win is a tribute to the combination of complete concentration by every single person on the team.” Scott Dixon from New Zealand who brought the car home has now won the race two times, while his co-drivers Tony Kanaan (Brazil), Americans Kyle Larson and Jamie McMurray were first time winners.

In the PC class the battle appeared to be over in the early hours as the #54 CORE autosport looked to be cruising to their second win in row. A couple of track incidents in the morning allowed #52 to catch up to the same lap, but it never looked likely to over haul the leader. That was until it all went wrong for #54 as it slammed into the wall just after exiting the bus stop (chicane) and burst in flames (driver Colin Braun stepped away uninjured), leaving #52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsport to slip home in their place.

#3 Corvette Racing’s victory in GTLM was arguably a gift too, as first their team mate #4, the class pole sitter, kept running into trouble with other cars and finally gave up the challenge after a serious shunt with a prototype in the closing stages. Second placed #25 BMW Team RLL could have made the job more difficult too it they had not spent several hours without a section of the rear bodywork after an excursion into the uneven grassland of the infield.

GTD winners #93 Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R of Riley Motorsport held it together best in a highly competitive class, holding off the challenge of two Porsche 911s. Driver Al Carter summed up the victory: “The team won the race today because of their ethic and how they prepared. They worked perfectly.”

Similar to 2013 and 2014, photographer Mark Coughlin documented the racing action at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015, offering the following images that highlight the endurance race.

Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 – Photo Gallery (click image for larger picture)

[envira-gallery id=”206306″]

Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 – Prototype Race Results

1. Chip Ganassi Racing/Riley DP Ford/740/1:39.736 (Overall Winner)
2. Action Express Racing/Corvette DP/ /740/1:39.986
3. Wayne Taylor Racing/Corvette DP 740/1:39.684

Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 – Prototype Challenge Race Results

1. PR1 Mathiasen Motorsport /ORECA FLM09/714/1.44.202
2. BAR1 Motorsports/ORECA FLM09/713/1:43.478
3. CORE autosport /ORECA FLM09/701/1:43.518

Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 – GT Le Mans Race Results

1. Corvette Racing/Chevrolet Corvette C7.R/725/1:43.942
2. BMW Team RLL/BMW Z4 GTE/725/1.44.334
3. Corvette Racing/Chevrolet Corvette C7.R /718/1:44.284

Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona 2015 – GT Daytona Race Results

1. Riley Motorsport/Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R/704/1:47.018
2. Alex Job Racing/Porsche 911 GT America/704/1.48.049
3. Wright Motorsports/Porsche 911 GT America/702/1.47.691

[Source: Rolex Motorsports; photos: Mark Coughlin]

Show Comments (4)

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  1. I was able to watch the first two hours of the race on the Fox East main network and a lot of the rest of the race on live stream on IMSA.com. Again I complained to the CBC for their lack of a least a mention of the race in their sports news. CBC will repeat other sports items over and over while ignoring many other international sporting events. You’d think there would be at least one motor sports fan at CBC Sport but I guess not.
    The photos here are quite good but I don’t care for the blurry artsy types.

  2. There is a huge gap in motor racing television coverage since the departure of the Speed Network, the Canadian motor sport fan base is huge, you only have to look at the Nascar series coming to Canada with the trucks and now there looks to be a possible Nascar Sprint cup race in canada when the Fort Erie track opens with co-owner Jeff Gordon.Wake up CBC

  3. Coverage has really gone downhill without the SPEED channel. Now NBC has NASCAR coverage. What a disappointment. Now we will get liberal propaganda that NBC doesn’t hesitate to put out to the public. They have no integrity and IMO doesn’t deserve to broadcast a good family sport such as NASCAR.