The 54th annual running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway was an amazing display of modern sportscar racing, but the last 35 minutes of the race was probably some of the best racing we’ve seen this decade.
There was so much pre-race hype around Ford and their new GT racers, but faulty transmissions, tire issues, and braking issues forced them into the garage for hours of the event, ultimately putting them at the back of the pack (of their class). The No. 66 GT finished seventh and the No. 67 GT finished in ninth place in the GTLM class, while cross-town rivals Corvette Racing finished first and second with their C7.R Corvettes.
After the C7.R Corvettes made their way around the class-leading No. 912 Porsche 911 of Earl Bamber, Corvette Racing program manager, Doug Fehan, gave his drivers the go-ahead to duke it out amongst each other for the rest of the race, and we’re so glad he did. Oliver Gavin in the No. 4 C7.R fiercely fended off his teammate, Antonio Garcia, in the No. 3 C7.R. Garcia chased Gavin hard for a few laps, using his advantage of new tires, but it wasn’t enough for Gavin’s short lines.
With roughly three minutes left to go, Garcia makes a move on Gavin coming into Turn One, but took a wider line, which left an opening for Gavin to get his top spot back. The IMSA radio announcers were in complete shock over what they were witnessing, and they couldn’t be more excited to be reporting on it.
For the rest of the three minutes left in the 24-hour race, Gavin held off Garcia and the two crossed the line side by side, securing a first and second place finish. The last 15 minutes of the Rolex 24 were awesome, and we hope there’s more racing like it this season, and for the rest of motorsport existence for that matter. Thanks to YouTube, we can all relive the final moments of the 2016 Rolex 24 to our heart’s content.