With three hours to run in the Rolex 24 it’s too close to call in three of the four classes, with the top three in Prototype within 20 seconds of each other, the top six in GTLM within three seconds and the top six in GTD within a minute of one another.
Leading Prototype is the #10 Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac of Jordan Taylor who had the #10 Cadillac handed over to him in the lead after a masterful final stint by Max Angelelli, the last of his career. As it stands the #5 Action Express Cadillac sits second, with Rene Rest still pushing hard in the #90 Visit Florida Riley to keep it in the fight.
It wasn’t plain sailing for the top three in Prototype though, as when the track was dry enough for slicks, Joao Barbosa in the #5, Jordan Taylor in the WTR Caddy and Rast in the Visit Florida Riley all struggled for grip and had off track excursions, tightening the race up front.
The door-to-door action all morning has come from the GTLM class though, as Ferrari, Corvette and Ford continue to duke it out for the lead. Joey Hand, Toni Vilander, Antonio Garcia and Harry Tincknell have been the stars of the show, with the #911 Porsche of Dirk Werner also on the outside looking in.
As it stands the top four are circulating In a train, with Calado leading Hand’s #66 GT after a move just before the end of hour 21, with Garcia, Johnson in the #68 and Tincknell in the #69 also running bumper-to-bumper behind. It’s setting up to be a thrilling finish.
GTD’s battle up front is also pretty close, with the #33 Riley Mercedes of Mario Farnbacher leading the way ahead of the Scuderia Corsa Ferrari of Sam Bird fighting its way back into contention in second. Third is the Stevenson Audi, with the best of the Acuras, the #86, sitting just off the podium spots after leading a lengthy period of the morning running. It’s been an incredible run for Michael Shank Racing, who have shown off the NSX GT3s potential in both pace and reliability.
Performance Tech still leads PC as all the other entries continue to make regular trips through the grass and into the tyres.
Of the notable incidents in the past three hours, the #55 Mazda cruised into the pits with Spencer Pigot driving, with the rear end of the car on fire. The car subsequently looks like it will become the first confirmed retirement in the Prototype class.