Scott Speed defends his X Games Gold Medal in Red Bull Global Rallycross

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Today’s X Games at Circuit of the Americas in Austin may not be a points-paying round for the Red Bull Global Rallycross, but it is one of the championship’s signature events.

And for the second consecutive year, Scott Speed of Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross has earned the X Games Gold Medal.

Brian Deegan, in his first start of the season for Chip Ganassi Racing’s new rallycross team, CGR Rallycross, battled OMSE’s Sebastian Eriksson, a Red Bull GRC rookie, to kick off the race.

But Speed, in the No. 41 Shark Week Volkswagen Beetle for VARX, got into medal contention after SH Rallycross substitute driver Andreas Bakkerud spun out of contention.

Speed was past Eriksson by the halfway point and able to pull away from there. CGR’s other driver, Steve Arpin, was able to make it into second with Eriksson holding off Deegan for third and the final podium position.

It gives Speed his first win of the season after winning three points-paying races, plus X Games, in 2014.

“It was a crazy final race, definitely the most gratifying of my career from the fact that it just took so much work, not only from myself, but from the whole Volkswagen Andretti team,” Speed said.

“I’m sure the show for the X Games fans was amazing; I know I cannot wait to get back home and watch it. It was a true testament to the Beetle because it took a beating out there.

“Ideally it would have been nice to just get through Turn 1 on the inside and just check away from the field, but that didn’t happen. I’d much rather win X Games Gold that way, it was a dog fight and when you are able to close on the win after such a battle is an incredible feeling.”

And, for good measure, he won in 2013 at the X Games, too.

It also gives Andretti a win over Ganassi for the second straight week. Call it a reach, but Andretti Autosport banked its first Verizon IndyCar Series win of the year a week ago Saturday in Detroit with Carlos Munoz winning the race and the highest-placed Ganassi driver, Scott Dixon, in fifth place.

Ganassi himself, meanwhile, seemed over the moon with Arpin bringing his Ford Fiesta home in second in only his second race with the team.

As Ganassi is set for his own Triple Crown weekend, with races in Red Bull GRC, IndyCar and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, I coined a term on Twitter to describe his weekend.

As for Red Bull GRC, its next event is a return to points-paying status, at Daytona June 20-21. That will be live at 2 p.m. ET, Sunday June 21, on NBC.

Unofficial results are linked below:

Final 2023 Rolex 24 at Daytona results, stats

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The 2023 Rolex 24 at Daytona overall results were all streaks: two consecutive victories in the endurance classic for Meyer Shank Racing and three in a row for Acura.

And Helio Castroneves became the second driver to win three consecutive Rolex 24s and the first to win in three straight years (Peter Gregg won in 1973, ’75 and ’76; the race wasn’t held in ’74 because of a global oil crisis).

Starting from the pole position, Tom Blomqvist took the checkered flag in the No. 60 ARX-06 that led a race-high 365 of 783 laps with co-drivers Castroneves, Simon Pagenaud and Colin Braun.

RESULTS: Click here for the finishing order in the 61st Rolex 24 at Daytona l By class

Meyer Shank Racing now has two Rolex 24 victories and the 2022 championship since entering the premier prototype category of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in 2021.

“I think what’s so special about this team is we are a small team compared to some of our opponents, but the atmosphere, the way we work, enables people to get the best out of themselves, and I think that’s why we’re such high achievers,” Blomqvist said. “I think there’s no egos. It’s a very open book, and that just enables each and every one of us to reach our potential. I think that’s why we’ve achieved so much success in really a short time at this level of competition.”

It’s the 16th IMSA victory for MSR.

The 61st running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona marked the debut of the Grand Touring Prototype category that brought hybrid engine technology to IMSA’s top level.

In other categories:

LMP2: James Allen passed Ben Hanley on the final lap and delivered a victory in the No. 55 ORECA by 0.016 seconds. It’s the second IMSA victory for Proton Competition, which last won at Sebring in 2012. It was the first Rolex 24 victory for Allen and co-drivers Gianmaria Bruni, Fred Poordad and Francesco Pizzi.

GTD Pro: Cooper MacNeil won in the last start of his IMSA career as the No. 79 Mercedes-AMG GT3 scored the first Rolex 24 at Daytona for WeatherTech Racing and the team’s fourth career victory.

MacNeil, who co-drove with Maro Engel, Jules Gounon and Daniel Juncadella, earned his 12th career victory and first at the Rolex 24.

“Winning by last IMSA race is tremendous,” MacNeil said.

GTD: The No. 27 Heart of Racing Team delivered the first Rolex 24 at Daytona for Aston Martin, which has been competing in endurance races at Daytona International Speedway since 1964. Drivers Marco Sorensen, Roman De Angelis, Darren Turner and Ian James (also the team principal) earned the victory in the English brand’s 13th attempt.

It’s also the first Rolex 24 at Daytona win for Heart of Racing, which has seven IMSA wins.

LMP3: Anthony Mantella, Wayne Boyd, Nico Varrone and Thomas Merrill drove the No. 17 AWA Duqueine D08 to victory by 12 laps for the team’s first class win in IMSA.


STATS PACKAGE FOR ROLEX 24 HOURS OF DAYTONA:

Fastest laps by driver

Fastest laps by driver after race (over the weekend)

Fastest laps by driver and class after race

Fastest lap sequence

Lap chart

Leader sequence

Race analysis by lap

Stint analysis

Time cards

Pit stop time cards

Best sector times

Race distance and speed average

Flag analysis

Weather report

NEXT: The 2023 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season will resume with the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring March 18 with coverage across NBC, USA and Peacock.