Hypnotic effect – Round By Round
Race weekend with a time travel
Within 24 hours, the audience of the „Classic 24 Hours Daytona“ experienced five decades of racing history. Contemporaries competed against each other – regardless of their power ranges, such as when they went up against each other in their former active times on the grids. Mid-November the Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) had put together an exciting field of participants. From the Lola T70 to Matra MS 630 in the 1960s, BMW CSL and Porsche 935 from the hot 1970, Porsche 962 and Jaguar XJR-1980s up to the race cars of the 21st century as the Audi R8, Pescarolo LMP and the current Daytona Prototype . A race weekend, which will stay in remembrance.
The 24 hours race took place in Florida at Daytona Speedway for the second time. In six separate grids 174 racing cars and participants start into the race. Similar to the Le Mans Classic, it was to drive four races and the class winners were determined from the total driven time. The list of participants was a “Who’s Who” in the international racing scene: Jochen Mass, Bobby Rahal, Danny Sullivan, Gijs van Lennep, Jurgen Barth, Andy Wallace, Elliott Forbes-Robinson, Eric Curran, Leh Keen, Scott Sharp, Jim Pace, Gunnar Jeanette, Dieter Quester, Didier André, Jean Marc Gounon, Jules Gounon, Zak Brown, Richard Dean, Jeff Zwart, Cooper MacNeil, Shane Lewis, Jack Baldwin, Mike Skeen were present.
The oldest vehicles built in 1960 until 1972 started in Grid A, with legendary racing cars such as the Ford GT40, Lola T70, Chevron B8, Ferrari 365 GTB, Covetts and Mustangs. A highlight this year was a Matra MS 630, driving in this group for the first time in the US. Winners in Group A were Gray Gregory / Randy Buck in their Chevron B16.
Group B featured race cars between 1973 and 1982. The BMW CSLs, Porsche RSR 91, Shelby GT350, Camaros and Corvettes Grennwood created facinated the audience. Winners in Grid B: Group Robert Blain / Ron Maydon in their March 75S
The group C was dominated by the Porsche cars. Although at the beginning especially the Jaguar XJR-5s and XJR-7 models found their attention, the Porsche Fabcar and the Aston Martin AMR-1 prototype soon moved in the spotlight of visitors, – but on the track the Porsches prooved their superiority and occupied all three winning position. 1st place: Mark Patterson / Christian with their Porsche 964.
The participants – drivers, crew and audience – all felt the splendor of passing days and the excitement. To see how the day slowly sinks into the night and the car slowly looses the contours in the twilight and enlightens again in the glare of the spotlight – a slight hypnotic effect. Round after round and round … relaxation for the automotive enthusiast. If it then dawn falls, as the end must be near and the few steadfast who survived the night are countable, you can hardly believe, that it is once again another six hours to go.