The finish of the Daytona Prototype division in the Rolex 24 Grand-Am race at Daytona came down to pit strategy and the dominant car prevailed.
Juan Pablo Montoya pitted from the lead in Chip Ganassi's No. 01 BMW Riley -- the strongest car for much of the race's 24 hours -- with just under seven minutes left and was able to retake the lead and the win just minutes later after Max Angelelli in the No. 10 pitted for fuel.
A caution flag with approximately an hour to go set up the fuel-strategy filled sprint to the finish, as most of the DP cars were just outside their fuel windows. Last year's champion, the No. 60 of Michael Shank Racing that had AJ Allmendinger in the car for the final stint, made it to the finish without having to stop for fuel but was out of contention after being forced off into the grass and a subsequent pit stop to clean the grille.
Allmendinger was aggressive after the final restart, and got to the outside of Joao Barbosa, and Barbosa pushed Allmendinger up as far as he could, sending Allmendinger into the grass and then onto pit lane. The move also destroyed Barbosa and the No. 9 Starworks team's chances, as he was penalized 60 seconds for avoidable contact. The No. 60, also driven by Marcos Ambrose and Justin Wilson, finished third, and the No. 9 finished fourth.
Montoya, Pruett, Memo Rojas and Charlie Kimball completed 709 laps over the course of the race. It's Pruett's fifth Rolex 24 DP win.
Ganassi's other car, the No. 02 with Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon, Jamie McMurray and Joey Hand, suffered damage and lost laps when McMurray made contact with the pit road wall overnight and then retired on Sunday morning when Franchitti had a gearbox failure.
In the GT division, Felipe Albequerque drove the No. 24 Audi to victory lane after pitting late and getting off of pit lane ahead of the Nos. 52 and 69, who had been battling for the race lead before pitting with approximately 45 minutes to go. In the new GX class, David Donohue drove the No. 16 to the finish line, one of the three of six cars in the class to make it to the finish of the race.
Clint Bowyer and Michael Waltrip, who shared the No. 56 GT Ferrari with Rob Kauffman and Rui Aguas, finished 8th.
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