Photo courtesy of IMSA

IMSA: Roar Before the 24 Saturday results

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IMSA’s Roar Before the 24 continued on Saturday with three test sessions for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship: the first taking place in the morning (at 10:50 a.m.), the second in the middle of the afternoon (at 3:30 p.m.), and the final one at night (at 6:30 p.m.).

Saturday’s running saw one manufacturer continue to dominate the Prototype class, and another do the same in GTLM. Meanwhile, three different marques spent time at the top in GT Daytona.

Below are reports about all three classes:

CADILLAC CONTINUES TO LEAD THE WAY IN PROTOTYPE

The Cadillac DPi-V.R remained its dominant self on Saturday, with all three sessions seeing a Cadillac at the top of the field when the checkered flag fell.

In the morning practice (Practice 3 for the weekend), it was Wayne Taylor Racing’s turn at the top, with Jordan Taylor leading the way in the No. 10 Konica Minolta entry. In the mid-afternoon session (Practice 4 for the weekend), Action Express Racing returned to the top, after leading both sessions on Friday, with Felipe Nasr leading the way in the No. 31 Whelen Engineering machine. Eric Curran subsequently kept the No. 31 Cadillac on top in the day’s final session (Practice 5 for the weekend) and the only night session on tap across the three days at the Roar.

Further, the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Racing Cadillac ranked in the top five of all three sessions (second in Practice 3, third in Practice 4, and fourth in Practice 5).

All told, it meant Cadillac swept the Saturday sessions, echoing the feat from Friday, even taking the top four spots in Practices 4 and 5.

The only other cars in the top five in any session were Oreca 07 Gibsons. CORE Autosport went third quickest in Practice 3, with their No. 54 Oreca, Jackie Chan DCR JOTA was fifth in Practices 4 and 5 in their No. 78 Oreca, and JDC-Miller Motorsports was fifth quickest in Practice 3 with their No. 99 Oreca.

Also: Team Penske entered the top 10 in the overall time sheets for the weekend, with the No. 6 ARX-05 turning the seventh fastest time of the weekend so far, doing in Practice. The sister No. 7 entry ranks 12th at the end of Day 2, its fastest lap also coming in Practice 4.

FORD TOPS ALL THREE SESSIONS IN GTLM

Ford Chip Ganassi Racing saw one of its Ford GTs lead the way in all three sessions. Scott Dixon topped Practice 3 in the No. 67 machine, with co-driver Ryan Briscoe keeping the No. 67 at the top in Practice 4. Sebastien Bourdais then put the No. 66 entry atop the time charts in Practice 5 (the No. 66 Ford was third in Practice 5, respectively).

The Porsche GT Team was able to nip at the heels of the Ganassi-led squad, however, especially in Practice 5, when Gimmi Brunni put the No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR in second. The sister No. 911 entry was fourth in that session, with Corvette Racing putting the No. 4 Corvette C7.R in fifth during the final practice of the day.

PORSCHE, ACURA, LEXUS TRADE PLACES ATOP GT DAYTONA

The GT Daytona class saw three different marques at the top of the three Saturday sessions. Practice 3 saw the No. 59 Porsche 911 GT3 R from Manthey Racing, in the hands of Matteo Cairoli, lead the way. Practice 4 saw Acura takes its turn up front, with Mario Farnbacher doing so in the NSX GT3 from Michael Shank Racing. Finally, in Practice 5, 3GT Racing put the No. 14 Lexus RCF GT3 at the front.

Practice 5 ended with GRT Grasser Racing Team in second, with their No. 11 Lamborghini Huracan GT3. Third went to the No. 15 Lexus from 3GT Racing, followed by the No. 73 Porsche 911 GT3 R from Park Place Motorsports in fourth. Montaplast by Land-Motorsport completed the top five with their No. 29 Audi R8 LMS GT3.

Of note: the fastest GT Daytona time of the weekend still belongs to GRT Grasser Racing Team, whose best lap of 1:47.104 was set on Friday during Practice 1.

Results from all three of Saturday’s sessions are below, along with combined results from all five completed sessions.

The third and final day of the Roar Before 24 kicks off Sunday, with Practice 6 beginning at 10:45 a.m. followed by qualifying sessions to decide pit box and garage locations.

Practice 3 Results
Practice 4 Results
Practice 5 Results
Combined Practice Results

 

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GoDaddy to sponsor Patrick in ‘Danica Double’ at Daytona, Indy — now all she needs are rides

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By The Associated Press

Danica Patrick is going back to green.

GoDaddy Green, to be exact – a fitting color for her farewell tour.

The company will sponsor Patrick in the upcoming “Danica Double” that will close out her racing career, The Associated Press has learned. Patrick has no ride yet for next month’s Daytona 500 or the Indianapolis 500 in May, but she now has the financial backing to pull it off.

This time around, the original GoDaddy Girl will symbolize the new core mission of the company that helped make her one of the world’s most recognizable athletes.

“There’s this great story: I left IndyCar with GoDaddy on my car, I started NASCAR with GoDaddy on my car, I’m most recognized as the GoDaddy green car and driver, and so to finish up my career that way feels appropriate,” Patrick told the AP from Scottsdale, Arizona.

Her final race will be the Indy 500, an appropriate choice because it was “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” that rocketed Patrick and GoDaddy into pop culture notoriety.

GoDaddy and Patrick grew up together. The company switched series with her and marketed her as a strong, sexy woman in 13 Super Bowl commercials – a record appearance for celebrities. Now, the company is most interested in Patrick the budding businesswoman who is firmly closing the door on her racing career and rebranding herself as an entrepreneur . She has a book out, an apparel line, a wine label and confirmed to AP this week that she’s dating Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

“Our goals are so well-aligned,” Barb Rechterman, the chief marketing officer of GoDaddy, told AP. “She’s passionate, tenacious and creative just like so many of our customers who are also looking to leverage the power of the internet and turn their `side hustle’ into a full-time business. Danica absolutely epitomizes the heart of our GoDaddy customers.”

Prepare to hear a lot about the “side hustle” as GoDaddy climbs aboard the so-far fledgling “Danica Double.”

Patrick announced in November she would end her driving career with the Daytona 500 and Indy 500, but didn’t have a deal completed for either race. Still doesn’t. Yet somehow, Patrick always figures a way to get what she wants. Talks ended with Chip Ganassi Racing about a possible ride, and late last month, Patrick said, she called former GoDaddy founder Bob Parsons and asked about a reunion.

GoDaddy has rebranded since it last teamed with Patrick. The company now touts itself as “the world’s largest cloud platform dedicated to small, independent ventures,” and there’s no better spokeswoman than Patrick, who is in the next chapter of her life and her brand.

GoDaddy pulled out of racing after the 2015 season, and Patrick hasn’t had the same level of funding and marketing support since. Patrick has slowly reshaped her image, first into a Instagram model and is now a full-blown lifestyle guru. She realized – at the age of 35 – she was on her own.

She and GoDaddy aligned for a splashy move into NASCAR, where she was glamorous off the track but only mediocre on it. Through all of this, she was married, divorced, spent five years dating fellow driver and competitor Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and then seemed to find herself through a tailored diet, exercise and a healthy lifestyle.

She is cutting the cord on racing after Indy, and her focus is on a sense of well-being far away from the track.

“Their business is so perfectly paired to what is going on with mine, so when we sat down and met, it was like, `Let’s talk about our business. Let’s talk about the messaging. How does this work?”‘ Patrick said. “And this is undeniably perfect for both of us. Not only is it a huge two races and the biggest two races of the year, but on top of that, you have so much `side hustle’ going on, and all the messaging and our brands, and where we are going is so perfectly paired.”w

GoDaddy can help Patrick move on to whatever it is for racing’s former “It Girl.” The company will help her streamline her online presence. Patrick, for the company, is back as a neon green-and-yellow symbol to all the wannabe entrepreneurs chasing dreams.

She’ll get those rides, too. Patrick said she knows she will because she believes she will.

“That’s just the way the universe works,” she said. “You have to ask for what you want. Things have taken a long time with this, but you just have to go with the flow on these things. The universe is not on your time schedule.”

More AP auto racing: https://racing.ap.org/