Cooke had led early in the race in car #81, but a problem with a fuel hose on a pit stop took the car out of first. But Liefooghe managed to move the car forward again, setting the stage for his battle with Eversley. “The last few laps were a drafting game," he said. "We’ve been on the podium three times in a row, and it’s all about where you are on the last lap. This time we came in second, and it was a battle all the way until the end. It was hard racing [with Ryan Eversley], but it was clean. He’s a great driver, and I really enjoyed racing with him.”
The overall race win—and the win in the Grand Sport class—went to Billy Johnson and Jack Roush Jr. in a Mustang Boss 302. It was their second consecutive win at Daytona. Nick Longhi and Matt Plumb finished second in the Rum Bum Porsche.
While the pace of the M3s was competitive, BMW had a difficult day in the Grand Sport class. The best-finishing BMW in the class was the eighteenth-place Automatic Racing M3 driven by Steven Phillips and Rob Ecklin, Jr. Next were Charles Espenlaub and Brett Sandberg, who had run in the top ten in their #48 Fall-Line M3 despite losing fourth gear. Then the transmission failed on the last lap, dropping the car to nineteenth.
The other two Fall-Line M3s were involved in incidents that set them back. Mark Boden hit the tire wall in #46, but returned to the race, and Al Carter went off course on a restart in #45. Both cars finished well back in the pack.
Turner Motorsport’s M3, driven by Bill Auberlen and Paul Dalla Lana, exited the race when the car lost oil pressure during Auberlen’s stint.
The withdrawl of the Turner car was the second blow to the team's weekend ambitions; earlier in the day, Andy Priaulx crashed into a wall in the #93 Rolex Series GT class M3 after a reported brake failure. The car was withdrawn from the Rolex 24, leaving the team with one M3.—Brian S. Morgan
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