The last time Ford won the 12 Hours of Sebring was back in 1969. That was when a Ford GT40 MkI beat out a Ferrari 312P. That was at the tail end of Henry Ford II and Enzo Ferrari’s decade-long motor sports rivalry.
Now, 45 long years later, Chip Ganassi Racing’s Ford Daytona Prototype brought the glory back to Dearborn after 12 chaotic and dramatic hours.
The skilled drivers, Marino Franchitti, Scott Pruett, and Memo Rojas, managed to get the Ford Daytona Prototype across the finish line a mere 5 seconds ahead of Ryan Danziel and the Extreme Speed Motorsports HPD ARX-03B. They managed to do this after a late restart bunched the field up.
The win makes Chip Ganassi the only team owner ever to have race titles from the Daytona 500, Indianapolis 500, Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, and the 12 Hours of Sebring.
As for the GT classes, cars from Stuttgart took the win. Andy Lally, John Potter, and Marco Seefried won GT Daytona in the No. 911 car. Amazing pit stops helped Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long, and Michael Christensen drive the CORE Autosports Porsche 911 RSR to victory in the GTLM class.
With the Prototype Challenge class, former NASCAR Nationwide Series champion Colin Braun helped put the CORE-ORECA Chevrolet FLM09 best reigning class champion Bruno Junquiera.
With the highly anticipated Chevrolet Corvette C7.R, fuel pump issues and 2 spins dropped the leading Vette to 6th, which disappointed driver Oliver Gavin. Ben Keating and the SRT Viper GT-D retired within the first hour after a truly spectacular fire.
The revolutionary Nissan DeltaWing led its class for several laps, but retired after Lap 104, thanks to a collision on that lap, in addition to a botched pit stop and multiple mechanical issues.