Thoughts on Rolex 24 at Daytona

In no specific order:

1. Daytona proves basically nothing as far as car performance balance. The course at Daytona is very different from the typical tracks the USCR will visit. I have a feeling that the dominance of the Corvette DP's will be balanced out and the P2 cars will be much quicker on the average road course. Same with GT, I'm not sure if the Vipers and Porsches will dominate as much as they did as far as speed.

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2. The broadcast quality was pretty hit and miss. I also hate having to chase broadcast across three different FOX networks and online. MRN network is hilariously bad. Food Show? Never thought I would miss the ESPN ALMS coverage so much. The last few hours with Tommy Kendall and Justin Bell weren't so bad, but I hope the shorter races will be easier to cover in a more consistent manner.

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3. Overall the homologation for the USCR is pretty competitive in the GT classes. GTLM is an awesome field, and GTD was insanely competitive. The prototypes need some help, but I think within a few years when they can introduce some new platforms for the P classes things will get better. The current situation is a band-aid to attempt to keep as many teams as possible in the sport with their current equipment, but this should be resolved eventually.

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4. I miss P1, but it was a dying breed anyway and I don't think it's realistic to expect teams to work on that level without major factory backing, and that probably won't happen here. I guess it's better to focus on what works, and right now that's GT on all levels.

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5. Good God that Gidley / Malucelli crash was horrific. Glad to hear no one lost their life, but I fear that the drivers will have some lasting injuries to recover from. Great for the sport that the technology is at the point where loss of life can be avoided in a crash that bad. I hope that's the worst we see all season.

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6. Contactgate. I love seeing Flying Lizard in the Audi's. It's a little weird, but they're going to be a really good team this year when they get some experience with the new car under their belt. I was rooting for them, but the call at the end should have never been a call. That close to the end, it's a no-call unless it's egregious. Would have been horrible for the first race of the sport to end in controversy.

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7. Ferrari: I don't know why, but I'd say 8/10 idiotic moves I saw on track had to do with a GTD Ferrari. Bonus points to the 72 car of SMP/ESM racing (i think) who ran Joey Hand to the wall during the final laps while he was less than a second behind the GTLM race winner.

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8. Mechanical Failure: Seems like a whole lot of teams had issues with mechanical failures. Ganassi, Corvette, Viper, Aston, 911, BMW, basically everyone. I think it's natural this would happen considering the late-breaking regulations, lack of testing, and the fact that the first race of the season is a 24-hour race. However, ALMS often had 3, 4, and 5 car battles for class win towards the end of the race. I'd like to see less attrition.

Also, it was brutal out there, lots of tape strips and missing body panels at the end of the race. Mixed bag, I guess.

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