The 24 Hours of Daytona Weekend Recap

January 29, 2024Ramon Jones

The Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona has come to an end. As the checkered flag waved 4 champions were crowned. After 24 hours of on track action here’s how the weekend shaped up for this year’s Daytona winners.


The overall win and GTP class win came down to the very end of the race. The No. 07 Porsche Penske Porsche 963 had a 1 second lead over the No. 31 Whelen Cadillac V-Series.R who had been charging late in the race, but started to fall behind due to track traffic. With 3 laps to go the No. 31 Cadillac made a late lunge to attempt to gain ground, but would lose out again this time due to a slower GTD car splitting the pair and holding the No. 31 up just enough for the No. 07 Porsche to pull away. As the cars came around for the final two laps a bit of controversy occurred.

Almost immediately after the two laps to go announcement was made the checkered flag came out right as the drivers were to begin their final lap. The Porsche Penske cross the line first and the race was over. The incident occurred prior to the 24 hour mark being reached. IMSA later released a statement regarding the matter.

IMSA Issues Statement on the Race Finish

“Due to an officiating error in race control, IMSA inadvertently announced and subsequently displayed the white flag with under three minutes remaining in the race.

“At the end of the lap, the race-leading No. 7 GTP car then received the checkered flag with 1 minute, 35.277 seconds still remaining, ending the race short of the planned 24 hours by effectively one lap.

“Based on Article 49 of the 2024 IMSA Sporting Regulations and Standard Supplementary Regulations, should the checkered flag be inadvertently or otherwise displayed before the leading car completes the scheduled number of laps or before the prescribed time has been completed, the race is nevertheless deemed ended when the flag is displayed.”

Whether one more lap could have changed the outcome of the race; we will never know. There doesn’t appear to be any dissent from the teams involved. Thus the No. 07 Porsche Penske, Porsche 963 was crowned the 2024 Rolex 24 GTP Champion!


Era Motorsports returned to glory by winning the 2024 LMP2 24 Hours of Daytona Championship. Dwight Merriman, Ryan Dalziel, Connor Zilisch and Christian Rasmussen brought home the win in dominant fashion. The No. 18 drivers led 132 of the final 136 laps. Despite starting 11th the team fought to the front to take the win. Unlike last year’s LMP2 finish that came down to hundredths of a second. The No. 18 took the checkered flag with a 6.8 second advantage over the No. 04 Crowdstrike Racing car. The win also made Connor Zilisch the second youngest driver (17 years and 191 days old) to win the Rolex 24. The team had the following words.

Kyle Tilley (Team Owner)

“A second Rolex 24 win!!!! I still can’t believe it. A massive thank you to not only our drivers but also the crew and background staff; every single person played an important part in this victory. Dwight did his best run to date, handing the car over on the lead lap with his drive time done. Ryan was brilliant through the night to secure the lead, and then Connor and Christian were phenomenal.”

“I can’t accurately fit enough praise into one quote, just a weekend where every single person brought their A game, and I can’t thank them enough. A very special result for sure.”

Era motorsports wins the rolex 24 LMP2
The No. 18 Era Motorsports Oreca LMP2 07 at the 62nd Rolex 24. Photo by Ramon Jones/Chroma Visual

Christian Rasmussen

“It’s been an amazing few weeks here at Daytona with Era Motorsport. The team has done such an amazing job all weekend getting the car in the window. We weren’t always the fastest car and we were really struggling during the ROAR, but hard work and determination from the team got the car in the window, and ultimately that’s what we needed to win the race…We drove a good race, it was pretty problem free. We were on the lead lap for most of the race, and we had the pace to really make a push to the end.”

Connor Zilisch

“I was 17 coming into this weekend, but after all this stress I feel like I’m 35 now! I’m just so proud of the entire Era Motorsport team. They never gave up. Things weren’t always easy, but it’s a long race, and they knew that, and made sure I knew that because I’m a rookie at this stuff.

They were able to talk me out of stuff and talk me into things, and made me feel like I was supported and that I had a team behind me, and that’s important as a driver. It’s an honor to race with Era Motorsport, and I’m so glad we could get a Rolex today.”


Starting with GTD Pro, it was the No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari driven by Daniel Serra, Davide Rigon, Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado that took the GTD Pro win as the sole car on the lead lap in class. The No. 77 AO Racing Porsche finish second one lap back with third place finisher the No. 01 Paul Miller Racing BMW finished 3 laps behind the class lead lap. The Risi Competizione Ferrari team had the following words.

DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – JANUARY 27: #62: Risi Competizione, Ferrari 296 GT3, GTD PRO: Daniel Serra, Davide Rigon, Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado, pit stop during the Daytona 24 Hours at Daytona International Speedway on January 27, 2024 in Daytona International Speedway, United States of America. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt / Motorsport Images)

Alessandro Pier Guidi, Driver, Regarding how special it is to win the Rolex 24 with Ferrari and Risi

“Well, it’s amazing. First of all, I think we deserved this victory. We were also trying a lot of times to achieve this victory. We finished twice second, and it’s a long-time partnership between Risi and Ferrari, and between them and with the other drivers we have been very close many times, but never been able to achieve this victory.

“Finally, we get it. If you see in the footage after the checkered flag and the picture is amazing. Everyone was crying, happy, and I went and I gave a big hug to Giuseppe, because all the passion he put in here in this effort, he really deserved this”

Daniel Serra, Driver, Regarding the Rolex 24 victory

“The BMW (competitor) had a problem just before the pits and then it was more about bringing it home for me. Then after the yellow, the Porsche was on our lead lap. You know, it’s never easy. You start to hear some noises in the car, and you think everything is out of control on the last lap. I’m just really happy. This is the race I was missing and really wanted to win. This might be the happiest day in my racing career.”


After starting 53rd overall and 17th in class on the grid, the No. 57 Winward Racing Mercedes driven by Russell Ward, Philip Ellis, Indy Dontje and Daniel Morad won the GTD class race. With only two cars finishing on the class lead lap the No. 57 car outpaced the Ferraris behind finished 2.7 seconds ahead of the No. 21 AF Corse Ferrari and a whole lap ahead of third place finisher the No. 34 Conquest Racing Ferrari.

winward racing rescures GTD title at rolex 24
The No. 57 Winward Racing Mercedes AMG GT3 at the 2024 Rolex 24. Photo by Ramon Jones/Chroma Visual

The next WeatherTech Championship race is the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring set to take place March 16 at Sebring International Raceway just south of Daytona.