Grand AM » 30 June 2006
Braun becomes youngest winner.
"I think we had the car again to win, but we couldn't because of the mileage," Rockenfeller added. "It's frustrating, but on the other hand, it's good to have a good finish and some points for the championship. I hope next race we can win."
Diaz—who led twice for a total of 24 laps—and Pruett earned their sixth podium result of the season with a third-place performance. The CompUSA duo has also finished inside the top 10 in eight of 10 races, and the result comes on the heels of a 21st-place Daytona Prototype result after a crash in the EMCO Gears Classic. In fact, the damage coupled with the tight turnaround between races forced the team to use the same car that IndyCar champions Scott Dixon and Dan Wheldon and NASCAR racer Casey Mears co-drove to victory in the 2006 Rolex 24 At Daytona.
Defending Daytona Prototype co-champions Wayne Taylor and Max Angelelli wound up fourth in the #10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley. It was Angelelli's sixth-consecutive top-four performance and enabled him to maintain fourth place in the Daytona Prototype driver standings with 322 points.
With less than one-tenth of a gallon in their fuel cell, Jon Fogarty and Alex Gurney finished fifth in the #99 GAINSCO/Blackhawk Racing Pontiac Riley. It was their third-straight top-five finish and their fifth-consecutive top-eight performance dating to a second-place run in the Road & Track 250 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in early May.
In the Rolex Series GT class meanwhile points leaders Andy Lally and Marc Bunting scored their third victory of the season — and more importantly, extended their lead in the standings — with the class win.
Lally inherited the lead from #72 NEC Porsche GT3 driver Wolf Henzler on lap 60 after the #72 machine had to come down pit road for a late splash of fuel. Henzler and co-driver Robin Liddell finished second, and now find themselves eight points in arrears of Bunting and Lally in the GT standings (407-399).
"We won this one on strategy," said Lally. "We got every ounce of fuel in that car. I think this is the first one that I've ever won on fuel mileage. A lot of Rolex races don't come down to that but when it does come down to that, you've got to make sure everything is right and our guys did."
Bunting started the machine from the pole position, but as the opening stint went on, he fell as low as eighth in the running order. The Maryland native rebounded, however, handing over the car to Lally during a green flag pit stop in contention for the win.
"I think everything went our way," Bunting said. "We knew we had a chance to take in one spot but we caught the yellows early. We were having to stretch the fuel load early on. We certainly didn't win the race on speed; we won it on lap times and strategy. I didn't expect to be on top of the podium here but it's definitely a great surprise."
Liddell started alongside Bunting at the green flag, but took the lead in Turn 1, leading throughout his 28-lap opening stint. Like Bunting, Liddell handed the machine over to Henzler during a green flag stop, but while the #65 machine made it on just one stop, the #72 Porsche surrendered its lead to get fuel.
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