The 2003 Rolex 24 at Daytona
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The 2003 Rolex 24 at Daytona

Porsche added another Daytona title to its list as the Racer’s Group #66 Porsche GT3 dominated the field to capture the overall victory at the 41st Rolex 24 at Daytona this year. In what was one of the better 24 Hours of Daytona races, the #66 Porsche GT3, piloted by Kevin Buckler, Michael Schrom, Timo Bernhard and Jorg Bermeister managed to best the rest of the field by 9 laps when the checkered flag waved.

Four Porsches finished in the top ten, with GT3 RS cars finishing first and third. The Risi Competizione Ferrari finished in second place, and in its second win ever in the Rolex Series, a Mosler MT900R won the GTS Class. With less than an hour to go, the #24 Mosler took the lead after the #46 Morgan-Dollar Motorsports Corvette suffered transmission troubles. The two would finish 9th and 10th, respectively, overall.

The Daytona Prototype cars that dominated qualifying and practice sessions suffered early and semi-regular mechanical problems, which was a disappointment for many. Despite the troubles, two DP cars finished in the top ten – the Multimatic Motorsports Ford Multimatic finished with an overall 4th place (679 laps) and the Brumos Racing Porsche Fabcar finished with an overall 5th (661 laps).

Team Seattle won the SportsRacing Prototype II class with its seventh-place overall finish. This victory netted the team four Rolexes, and was a nice touch for the group that has (for seven years) raised money for the Seattle Children’s Hospital – this year they were able to raise more than $100,000 for the hospital.

The Rolex Sports Car Series travels to Homstead-Miami Speedway for the Nextel Grand Prix of Miami. The race will be held from February 28 through March 1, and tickets are still available by calling 305-230-RACE.

Race Stats – time of race: 24:01:07.001, distance: 695 laps, 2,474 miles, average speed: 103.012 mph, victory margin: nine laps.

1. (66) Kevin Buckler, Sonoma, Calif.; Michael Schrom, Ghent, N.Y.; Timo Bernhard, Germany; Jorg Bergmeister, Germany, GT, The Racers Group Porsche GT3 RS, 695.

2. (35) Ralf Kelleners, Germany; Anthony Lazzaro, Hickory, N.C.; Johnny Mowlem, England, GT, Risi Competizione Ferrari 360GT, 686.

3. (83) Johannes Van Overbeck, Danville, Calif.; Richard Steranka, Los Gatos, Calif.; Dave Standridge, Bel Air, Calif.; David Murry, Cumming, Ga., GT, Rennwerks Motorsports Porsche GT3 RS, 684.

4. (88) Scott Maxwell, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; David Brabham, Ft. Lauderale, Fla.; David Empringham, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, DP, Multimatic Motorsports Ford Multimatic, 679.

5. (59) Hurley Haywood, Ponte Vedra, Fla.; JC France, Daytona Beach, Fla.; Scott Goodyear, Carmel, Ind.; Scott Sharp, Jupiter, Fla., DP, Brumos Racing Porsche Fabcar, 661.

6. (43) Marc Lieb, Germany; Leo Hindery, New York, N.Y.; Kyle Petty, Trinity, N.C.; Peter Baron, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., GT, Orbit Racing Porsche GT3 RS, 656.

7. (5) Ross Bentley, White Rock, B.C., Canada; Don Kitch, Bellevue, Wash.; Joe Pruskowski, Woodinville, Wash.; Justin Pruskowski, Woodinville, Wash., SRPII, Team Seattle/ Essex Racing Nissan Lola, 652.

8. (15) Wade Gaughran, Auburn, Wash.; Peter Macleod, Bellevue, Wash.; David Gaylord, Graham, Wash.; Steven Gorriaran, Providence, R.I., SRPII, Team Seattle/ Essex Racing Nissan Lola, 648.

9. (24) Jerome Policand, France; Michel Neugarten, Monaco; Andy Wallace, England; Joao Barbosa, Portugal, GTS, Perspective Racing Mosler MT900R, 641.

10. (46) Charles Morgan, Little Rock, Ark.; Rob Morgan, Little Rock, Ark.; Lance Norick, Oklahoma City, Okla.; Jim Pace, Monticello, Miss., GTS, Morgan Dollar Motorsports Corvette, 639.

11. (34) Mauro Baldi, Monaco; Justin Keen, England; Ryan Hampton, Chandler, Ariz.; Eric Van de Poele, Belgium, GT, Ferri Competizione Ferrari 360GT, 638.

12. (31) Rob Barff, England; Andy Britnell, England; Richard Stanton, England; Richard Sutherland, Los Gatos, Calif., GTS, Rollcentre Racing Mosler MT900R, 635.

13. (69) Brian Cunningham, Danville, Ky.; Craig Stanton, Long Beach, Calif.; Hugh Plumb, Chadds Ford, Pa.; Cory Friedman, Charleston, S.C., GT, Marcus Motorsports BMW M3, 633.

14. (20) Augusto Farfus, Brazil; Max Papis, Miami Beach, Fla.; Andrea Garbagnati, Monaco; Emmanuel Collard, England, GT, JMB Racing USA Team Ferrari Ferrari 360GT, 621.

15. (30) Martin Short, England; John Burton, England; Tom Herridge, England; David Shep, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, GTS, Rollcentre Racing Mosler MT900R, 601.

16. (7) Franz Konrad, Austria; Airton Dare, Brazil; Jean Francois Yvon, France; Tony Seiler, Switzerland, GTS, Konrad Motorsport Saleen S7R, 600.

17. (49) Bebo Orlandi, Italy; Michele Merendino, Italy; Derek Clark, Corona Del Mar, Calif.; Ron Atapattu, Delray Beach, Fla., GT, Pit Bull/ MAC Racing Porsche GT3 RS, 595.

18. (21) Larry Oberto, Seattle, Wash.; Derrike Cope, Huntersville, N.C.; Chris Bingham, Bellevue, Wash.; Brian DeVries, Grand Rapids, Mich., SRPII, Archangel Motorsport Services Nissan Lola, 589.

19. (44) Mike Fitzgerald, Fountain Hills, Ariz.; Joseph Policastro Sr., Greensburg, Pa.; Joseph Policastro Jr., Greensburg, Pa.; Manuel Matos, Puerto Rico, GT, Orbit Racing Porsche GT3 RS, 566.

20. (97) Mirco Savoldi, Italy; Filippo Francioni, Italy; Piergiuseppe Peroni, Italy, SRPII, Lucchini Engineering Nissan Lucchini, 548.

21. (09) Paul Menard, Eau Claire, Wis.; Doug Goad, Farmington Hills, Mich.; Paul Mears Jr., Orlando, Fla.; James Briody, Cherry Hill, N.J., GTS, Flis Motorsports Corvette, 542.

22. (68) Jim Michaelian, Seal Beach, Calif.; Richard Valentine, Braintree, Mass.; Tom Hessert III, Cherry Hill, N.J.; Tom Hessert Jr., Cherry Hill, N.J., GT, The Racers Group Porsche GT3 RS, 501.

23. (03) Cor Euser, Netherlands; Peter Van Der Kolk, Netherlands; Rob Knook, Netherlands, GT, Marcos Racing USA Marcos Mantis, 465.

24. (8) Boris Said, San Marcos, Calif.; Darren Law, Phoenix, Ariz.; Dieter Quester, Austria; Luca Riccitelli, Italy, DP, G&W Motorsports BMW Picchio DP2, 451.

25. (3) Darius Grala, Weston, Mass.; Joshua Rehm, Plymouth, Mass.; Oswaldo Negri Jr., Aventura, Fla.; Guy Cosmo, S Setauret, N.Y., DP, Cegwa Sport Toyota Fabcar, 403.

26. (19) Anthony Puleo, St Augustine, Fla.; Kerry Hitt, Camp Hill, Pa.; Robert Dubler, Switzerland; Mark Kennedy, Daytona, Fla., GTS, ACP Motorsports/ Xtreme Racing Group Corvette, 391.

27. (05) Craig Conway, Edgewater, Fla.; Rick Carelli, Arvada, Colo.; Davy Liniger, Castle Rock, Colo.; John Metcalf, Aurora, Colo., GTS, Team Re/Max Racing Corvette, 378.

28. (77) Alexey Vasiliev, Russia; Nikolay Fomenko, Russia; Walter Lechner Jr., Austria; Tetsuya Tanaka, Japan, GTS, RWS Motorsport Porsche 996, 361.

29. (99) Jim Hamblin, Franconia, N.H.; Jim Nelson, Pasadena, Calif.; Barry Brensinger, Manchester, N.H.; Mark Greenberg, Boston, Mass., GT, NETTTS Racing Porsche GT3 RS, 316.

30. (40) Justin Bell, Delray Beach, Fla.; Derek Bell, Boca Raton, Fla.; Simon Gregg, Jacksonville, Fla.; Kenny Wilden, Oakville, Ontario, Canada, GTS, Derhaag Motorsports Corvette, 260.

31. (33) Cort Wagner, Los Angeles, Calif.; Brent Martini, Laguna Beach, Calif.; Sylvain Tremblay, Sunrise, Fla.; Selby Wellman, St Petersburg, Fla., GT, Scuderia Ferrari of Washington Ferrari 360GT, 214.

32. (73) Rob Wilson, England; Mike Newton, England; Martin Konig, England; David Gooding, England, GT, Graham Nash Motorsport Porsche GT3 RS, 211.

33. (10) David Terrien, France; Didier Moinel Delalande, France; Marco Saviozzi, France; Gianluca De Lorenzi, Italy, GT, MAC Racing Porsche GT3 RS, 206.

34. (58) David Donohue, Westchester, Pa.; Mike Borkowski, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Chris Bye, St Catharines, Ontario, Canada; Randy Pobst, Gainesville, Ga., DP, Brumos Racing Porsche Fabcar, 160.

35. (67) Andrew Davis, Lilburn, Ga.; Robert Julien, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Dave Lacey, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Tom Nastasi, Stamford, Conn., GT, The Racers Group Porsche GT3 RS, 151.

36. (98) Sascha Maassen, Belgium; Martin Snow, Pleasant Grove, Utah; Lucas Luhr, Monaco; Larry Schumacher, West Chester, Ohio, GT, Schumacher Racing/ Champion Porsche Porsche GT3 RS, 135.

37. (80) Shawn Bayliff, Alton, Va.; Andy Lally, Northport, N.Y.; Steve Marshall, Christiansburg, Va.; Robert Prilika, Lakewood, Colo., SRPII, G&W Motorsports BMW Picchio, 121.

38. (57) Alex Caffi, Italy; Fabio Rosa, Italy; Gabrio Rosa, Italy; Andrea Chiesa, Italy, GT, Seikel Motorsport Porsche GT3 RS, 101.

39. (54) Didier Theys, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Christian Fittipaldi, Key Biscayne, Fla.; Terry Borcheller, Phoenix, Ariz.; Forest Barber, Fort Worth, Texas, DP, Bell Motorsports Chevrolet Doran, 67.

40. (22) Stephen Earle, Garden Ridge, Texas; Philip Shearer, New York, N.Y.; Ludovico Manfredi, Key Biscayne, Fla.; Stephan Gregoire, Indianapolis, Ind., GT, JMB Racing USA Team Ferrari Ferrari 360GT, 54.

41. (48) Tommy Riggins, Jacksonville, Fla.; David Machavern, Charlotte, Vermont; Kevin Lepage, Shelburne, Vermont; Scott Lagasse, St Augustine, Fla., GTS, Heritage Motorsports Mustang, 49.

42. (18) Ken Stiver, Avon, Ind.; Scott Deware, Easton, Mass.; Don Bell, Woodside, Calif.; Jeff Kline, Topanga, Calif., GTS, Boston Motorsports Group Mosler MT900R, 14.

43. (6) Gunnar Jeannette, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.; Duncan Dayton, North Salem, N.Y.; Peter Kitchak, Minneapolis, Minn.; Ron Zitza, Maitland, Fla., GTS, Gunnar Racing Gunnar Porsche GT1, 9.

44. (51) Mauro Casadei, Italy; Christian Ried, Germany; Manfred Juraz, Austria; Gerold Ried, Germany, GTS, Proton Competition Porsche GT2, 2.

(Thanks to Christine Hyde of the Grand American Road Racing Association for the race standings list)

About Steve Litscher

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Food connoisseur, car guy, tech geek and dog lover.
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