Ganassi drivers cry because their Lexus no match for Porsche power
Scott Pruett, Juan Pablo Montoya and Chip Ganassi were looking to grab a piece of Rolex 24 At Daytona history Sunday afternoon. Pruett and Montoya were seeking to win their third straight Rolex 24, while Ganassi, the team's owner, was seeking an unprecedented fourth consecutive 24 title at Daytona International Speedway.
The No. 01 Lexus Riley led its share of laps, and it even led with a half-hour left in the race.
However, Montoya considered himself fortunate to be contending for the win in the closing moments before settling for runner-up honors.
"I tried, but with the amount of power they had going down the straight, I'm actually surprised we finished second," Montoya said. "I was actually surprised that we fought for the win to be honest."
Montoya and co-drivers Memo Rojas and Pruett combined to lead 80 of the race's 735 laps, but Montoya equated the closing moments of the race to "coming to a gunfight with a knife."
The Ganassi drivers claimed to be at a disadvantage because they could outmaneuver the Porsches in the infield but were no match power-wise exiting the turns and in the straightaways.
"Honestly, it's just sour grapes on their part. Porsche just built a good motor and like David (Donohue) said we've done our homework," said Darren Law, driver of winning No. 58 Porsche. "They crossed the line 50 feet behind us.
"It was a fight the whole way through. It wasn't like we just motored around on the outside."
Ganassi's two Lexuses combined to lead 162 laps, while the winning No. 58 Brumos Porsche led a race-best 254 laps and combined with its teammate, the No. 59 Porsche, to lead 305 laps.
Now, Law and Donohue are left to battle it out for the Daytona Prototype championship the rest of the season with Pruett and Rojas.
"When guys just drive by you it never seems right. Hopefully it will get evened out. It's just ridiculous and it's frustrating," Pruett said. "Grand Am says that everybody has the same power and somehow that slipped through the cracks.
"They try to make things equal, but it's far from it right now. I'd like to see (a change), otherwise it's going to be a long, damn season." Daytona Beach News Journal