NASCAR reps falter in Rolex 24 at Daytona

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In 2015, NASCAR drivers Jamie McMurray and Kyle Larson were part of the Chip Ganassi team that won the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

That wouldn’t be the case this past weekend when the two returned to compete with IndyCar’s Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan in the 54th running of the endurance race.

Just under three hours from the race’s conclusion, Larson was behind the wheel of the No. 02 Riley-Ford when he went off track and buried the car in a tire barrier.

The No. 02 finished the race 13th overall but seventh in the Prototype class. The car had to undergo a brake change in Hour 9 and already was many laps down.

Dixon led Laps 52-69, McMurray led Laps 82-95, 108-120 and Kanaan led Laps 179-183, 221-234, 237-240 and 250.

Sprint Cup veteran A.J. Allmendinger also raced in this year’s Rolex, but his team was sidelined before the 10-hour mark.

After starting from third, the No. 60 Honda-Ligier of Michael Shank Racing fell victim to an engine failure while leading. The No. 60 finished in 50th.

Allmendinger wasn’t behind the wheel at the time, but he did lead the race, which was the 11th straight Rolex 24 at Daytona that Allmendinger has led. It had been an emotional weekend for the team, which last year had Justin Wilson in its Rolex lineup. Wilson died after being hit by debris in an IndyCar crash at Pocono Raceway last August.

“It’s definitely the biggest heartbreak ever at the 24,” Allmendinger said in a team release. “My heart hurts for Michael Shank Racing, especially for Mike (Shank), Ozz (Negri), John (Pew) and Olivier (Pla). I love my teammates. It’s tough not having Justin (Wilson) here, I think everyone on the team was thinking of him this morning.”

Justin Marks, co-owner of HScott Motorsports with Justin Marks, drove the No. 16 Change Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3. Marks was running in second in the Daytona GT class when he crashed into another Lamborghini, driven by Bryce Miller, in the 11th hour in Turn 1.

Marks’ team finished 43rd.

The best result for a NASCAR driver was a podium finish in the PC class for Brendan Gaughan‘s team. The No. 20 ORECA FLM09 finished third and in 29th overall.