AJ Allmendinger held on to secure a maiden Daytona 24 Hours victory for Michael Shank Racing as Ryan Dalziel and the Starworks team edged closer in the final stint of the 50th running of the famous race.
The #60 MSR Riley-Ford that Allmendinger shared with Ozz Negri, John Pew and Justin Wilson was a factor in an absorbing and ever-changing lead battle throughout the event, and despite the polesitting Starworks Riley-Ford driven by Dalziel, Lucas Luhr, Allan McNish, Alex Popow and Enzo Potolicchio keeping the pressure on to the finish, Allmendinger crossed the line 5.198 seconds in front after 761 laps of racing.
Adding to MSR's celebrations, its #6 car completed the podium in the hands of Jorge Goncalvez, Michael McDowell, Felipe Nasr and Gustavo Yacaman.
Ganassi looked for a while like it might be able to take charge of the event once again, but it had to settle for fourth place with its #02 entry. The sister #01 car lost ground in the final hours with gearbox issues, but still came home sixth behind the best of the #5 Action Express Corvette.
The GT battle was also extremely close, with the top five cars all on the lead lap. Magnus Racing's #44 Porsche - driven by Andy Lally, Richard Lietz, John Potter and Rene Rast - fended off the #67 TRG Porsche to win the class, with the #59 Brumos Porsche, #57 Stevenson Camara and #63 Risi Ferrari following them home.
Leading results - 761 laps: Pos Drivers Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Allmendinger/Negri/Pew/Wilson Shank Riley-Ford 24h00m36.793s 2. Dalziel/Luhr/McNish/Popow/Potolicchio Starworks Riley-Ford + 5.198s 3. Goncalvez/McDowell/Nasr/Yacaman Shank Riley-Ford + 49.439s 4. Dixon/Franchitti/McMurray/Montoya Ganassi Riley-BMW + 1 lap 5. Donohue/Fittipaldi/Law Action Express Corvette + 3 laps 6. Hand/Pruett/Rahal/Rojas Ganassi Riley-BMW + 4 laps 7. Frisselle/Frisselle/Lowe/Tracy Doran Dallara-Ford + 13 laps 8. Garcia/Gavin/Magnussen/Westbrook Spirit of Daytona Corvette + 15 laps 9. Barbosa/Borcheller/France/Papis Action Express Corvette + 22 laps 10. Hunter-Reay/Mayer/Potolicchio/Andretti/Valiante Starworks Riley-Ford + 25 laps