Photo courtesy of IMSA

IMSA: CTSC race highlights Friday updates ahead of Rolex 24

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – On a day when there’s only one hour of IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship running before tomorrow’s 55th Rolex 24 at Daytona, there’s still a lot going on.

The four-hour BMW Endurance Challenge for the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge is in the books, kicking off that series’ season.

Race winners were Trent Hindman and Cameron Cassels, overall and in GS, in the No. 12 Bodymotion Racing Porsche Cayman GT4 over the pair of CJ Wilson Racing Porsches, the No. 33 car (Marc Miller, Till Bechtolsheimer) ahead of the No. 35 car (Damien Faulkner, Russell Ward). In ST, Luis Perocarpi’s LAP Motorsports team secured its first win with the MINI JCW, the No. 73 car driven by Mat Pombo and Derek Jones.

Here’s some of the day’s other activities, and more will be added later:

  • The final practice is complete for the race. Once again, it was a Cadillac DPi-V.R up front, this time Jordan Taylor in the No. 10 Konica Minolta entry. Times from the session are linked here. Notable was the effort of the DragonSpeed car to return to the track after overnight repairs building up a new tub, which was completed at 3:30 a.m.
  • IMSA key officials Scott Atherton (President, IMSA) Ed Bennett (CEO, IMSA), David Pettit (Vice President of Marketing, IMSA) and Simon Hodgson (Vice President of Competition, IMSA) were on hand to preview the 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season. Topics addressed included the premiere of the new cars, planned improvements to FOX Sports’ TV coverage, and the ongoing topic that is Balance of Performance. Atherton said if most manufacturers are all a little upset, it means IMSA is doing its job correctly. Hodgson explained IMSA’s data logging process, with tens of gigabytes of data being gathered to determine whether each car is meeting its ultimate performance.
  • A couple quick news notes: Motul has signed as title sponsor of Motul Petit Le Mans, the season finale race at Road Atlanta in October. IMSA has also announced one of its “Proud Charities,” the Austin Hatcher Foundation, has planned to build a new, permanent headquarters in Chattanooga, Tenn. Joey Hand, the GT Le Mans polesitter for Ford, was presented with the Austin Hatcher Foundation Humanitarian Award for his volunteer work.
  • Various media availabilities followed in the afternoon on what is largely a day for teams to finalize their prep and development work. Of note, the same media scrum that followed Jeff Gordon at previous Daytona tests again followed him today, with Jordan Taylor left to wonder where anyone’s questions were for him.

Dakar Rally Stage 13: Carlos Sainz has second overall victory in sight

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Editor’s note: Check out expanded video highlights of Stage 13 Saturday at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Carlos Sainz is nearing his second Dakar Rally victory while Nasser Al-Attiyah strengthened his bid for second by winning Friday’s 13th stage of the endurance race.

Sainz finished sixth in his Team Peugeot ride and holds a lead of 46:18 over Al-Attiyah’s Toyota.

“I tried to play it safe, even if there were plenty of tricky parts,” said Sainz, who won the Dakar Rally in 2010 but had failed to finish the past five races because of mechanical problems. “Since the start, there has been a lot of drama in this race and it’s not over until we’ve crossed the finishing line. It’s not a crazy Dakar, but it’s very difficult. I hope everything will go OK (Saturday).”

Defending race winner Stephane Peterhansel is in fourth overall, trailing by 1:28:08 after crashing and finishing 20th in the penultimate stage. The Frenchman has a record 13 overall wins in the Dakar but is unlikely to earn another despite rebounding well from a crash in the seventh stage that had knocked him from the overall lead.

In other divisions, Eduard Nikolaev (trucks), Matthias Walkner (motorcycles), Ignacio Casale (Quads) and Reinaldo Varela (SxS UTV) are on the cusp of capturing overall wins entering the final stage.

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STAGE 13 RESULTS, CARS

  1. Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, Toyota, 5:02:22
  2. Argentina’s Lucio ALvarez, Toyota, 5:13:38
  3. South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers, Toyota: 5:15:28
  4. Poland’s Jakub Przygonski, X-Raid, 5:17:29
  5. Finland’s Mikko Hirvonen, X-Raid, 5:21:46

OVERALL 

  1. Spain’s Carlos Sainz
  2. Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, 46:18 behind
  3. South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers, 1:20:00 behind
  4. France’s Stephane Peterhansel, 1:28:08 behind
  5. Poland’s Jakub Przygonski, 2:46:32 behind

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TRUCKS

  1. Russia’s Eduard Nikolaev, Kamaz, 5:59:02
  2. Russia’s Airat Mardeev, 5:59:52
  3. Czech Republic’s Martin Kolomy, Tatra, 6:05:08
  4. Belarus’s Siarhei Vlazovich, 6:26:47
  5. Czech Republic’s Dmitry Sotnikov, 6:31:56

OVERALL 

  1. Russia’s Eduard Nikolaev
  2. Belarus’s Siarhei Vlazovich, 3:53:59 behind
  3. Russia’s Airat Mardeev, 5:21:05
  4. Czech Republic’s Martin Kolomy, 9:01:18
  5. Czech Republic’s Dmitry Sotnikov, 10:04:29

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MOTORCYCLES

  1. Australia’s Toby Price, KTM, 4:48:33
  2. Argentina’s Kevin Benavides, Honda, 4:50:36
  3. France’s Antoine Meo, KTM, 4:51:17
  4. Austria’s Matthias Walkner, KTM, 5:00:05
  5. Spain’s Juan Pedrero Garcia, 5:03:45

AMERICAN RIDERS

15th: Mark Samuels (Honda), 5:19:40

18th: Shane Esposito (KTM), 5:27:14

37th: Andrew Short (Husqvarna), 5:58:14

68th: Bill Conger (Husqvarna), 7:16:00

OVERALL 

  1. Austria’s Matthias Walkner
  2. Argentina’s Kevin Benavides, 22:31 behind
  3. Australia’s Toby Price, 27:45
  4. France’s Antoine Meo, 50:17
  5. Spain’s Gerard Farres, 1:01:19

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QUADS

  1. Argentina’s Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli, 5:55:16
  2. Paraguay’s Nelson Augusto Sanabria Galeano, 5:58:34
  3. Chile’s Ignacio Casale, 5:59:19
  4. Argentina’s Nicolas Cavigliasso, 6:02:22
  5. Brazil’s Marcelo Medeiros, 6:02:23

OVERALL

  1. Chile’s Ignacio Casale
  2. Argentina’s Nicolas Cavigliasso, 1:37:16 behind
  3. Argentina’s Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli, 2:05:12
  4. Brazil’s Marcelo Medeiros, 4:25:26
  5. Peru’s Alexis Hernandez, 4:34:37

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SxS UTV

  1. France’s Patricie Garrouste, Polaris, 6:29:40
  2. Brazil’s Reinaldo Varela, Can-Am, 6:39:39
  3. France’s Claude Fournier, Polaris, 7:33:17
  4. Spain’s Jose Pena Campos, Polaris, 7:41:200

OVERALL 

  1. Brazil’s Reinaldo Varela
  2. France’s Patricie Garroueste, 53:28 behind
  3. France’s Claude Fournier, 10:02:12
  4. Spain’s Jose Pena Campos, 10:06:01

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SATURDAY’S SCHEDULE

Champions in all five classes will be crowned Saturday after the 14th and final stage concludes in Cordoba, Argentina.

MORE: Dakar Rally daily stages schedule, NBCSN broadcast schedule, list of all competitors.

MORE: Stage 12 wrapup

MORE: Stage 11 wrapup

MORE: Stage 10 wrapup

MORE: Stage 9 cancelled due to weather, impassible course conditions

MORE: Stage 8 wrapup

MORE: Stage 7 wrapup

MORE: Stage 6 wrapup

MORE: Stage 5 wrapup

MORE: Stage 4 wrapup

MORE: Stage 3 wrapup

MORE: Stage 2 wrapup

MORE: Stage 1 wrapup