Audi finishes Second at Daytona – almost. Then finishes third with a different car.

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From the “you’ve got to be kidding me” files, for the second year in a row the Land Motorsport entry found itself afoul of the rules that IMSA has in place for the 24 Hours of Daytona. Each driver has minimum required time in the car, and for whatever reason, Ricky Feller didn’t spend enough time behind the wheel of the Montaplast by Land Audi R8 LMS GTD.

By now you probably have 2 basic feelings –

  1. You’re an Audi fan thru and thru, and why does IMSA have it out for these Audi guys every year? The race was stopped and started so many times, naturally some teams got confused. And there’s too many rules anyway!
  2. Only one other team had issues with the driver time limits in this year’s race in the GTD class, so clearly it wasn’t THAT confusing. The rules are the same for all teams, and how hard is it to follow the rules?

When the announcement came out naturally we were severely irritated. But in this day and age, everyone knows that IMSA love to enforce their rules, and lets face it, it’s their race.

Here’s the official IMSA word:

Following the 57th running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) conducted its normal post-race audit of timing and scoring data. Upon analysis it was discovered that both the No. 29 Montaplast by Land Motorsport (driver Ricky Feller) and No. 63 Scuderia Corsa (driver Toni Vilander) entries in the GT Daytona (GTD) class were found to be in violation of drive-time requirements, as outlined by IMSA Sporting Regulations, and have been placed at the back of the class per Article 12.12 Drive-Time Penalty Order.

SSR 12.13.2, Minimum and Base Drive-Time, states, “Two drivers rated silver and/or bronze must individually achieve the minimum drive-time and each other driver (regardless of Driver rating) must individually drive the car for a base drive-time as listed in the SR or Car penalized in the drive-time penalty order priority.”

Minimum drive-time for the GTD class at the Rolex 24 was four hours, 45 minutes and base drive-time was three hours, 30 minutes. Both times were reduced by a percentage commensurate to the time lost while drive-time was stopped for red flags during the event, per SSR 12.11.5.

The No. 12 AIM Vasser Sullivan entry has been elevated to second in the GTD class results, with the No. 88 WRT Speedstar Audi Sport entry elevated to third following the penalty to the No. 29 entry, which was originally scored in the second position.

The No. 29 car has been moved to 22nd (46th overall) in the GTD race results, with the No. 63 scored 23rd in GTD (47th overall).

So there you have it. Once again IMSA rules dash the hopes of Audi Customer racing. It makes you wonder, will the Land Motorsport team try harder to follow the rules (assuming they even return to this race) next year? Will other Audi teams feel like they are being overly scrutinized?

We love the 24 Hours of Daytona, and we love Audi, but at the day, as frustrating as it is, the rules are the rules, and this is one thats SO easy to detect, and you’d think knowing the rules, that someone within the team would have known that Feller hadn’t been in the car long enough. It’s possible that the red flag sessions messed up some plans, but supposedly IMSA accounted for that as well.

Regardless of the penalty, we’re pretty happy with how the Audis ran in the race this year, the other teams showed lots of speed as well, and managed to stay out of trouble for the most part.


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