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The “26 Hours” of Daytona Classic 24 – 2020

The ex-Kremer Leyton House Porsche #962-114
The ex-Kremer Leyton House Porsche #962-114 of Angus Russell won the Group C section

Yes, you might think the title is a mis- print, but it is not. HSR (Historic Sportscar Racing) put on their now annual Historic 24-hour race for vintage cars at Daytona International Speedway from 4-8 November. This event is run in a similar fashion to the Le Mans 24 historic in terms of process and procedure. The cars are divided into six run groups, and each group runs for one hour, four times during the 24 hours (well actually after you factor in, race stop time, grid setup and restart of next group it ends up being 42 minutes). The cars are grouped into like historical groups, and there are different classes within the groups. So, while you might not win the overall group, you can win your class within the group. HSR has their own races, in addition to the 24-hour historic, which include several sprint races (20-30 mins) and two “endurance races” of 1-hour length. Most of the HSR races are used by teams to test and setup for the 24. Although there are some who just run the HSR races and skip the 24, while others do not run all the HSR short events and focus on the 24-hour.

Some teams had a sense of humour - this was their pit stop board!
Some teams had a sense of humour. This team used a placard from a bar and wing house down the street as a pit stop board!

The event always runs at Daytona in early November, so the weather is usually nice, as the Florida winter is setting in, which is quite comfortable. Daytime highs are around 75-80° F and night lows in the 60°s F. However, this being 2020, you might expect something out of the ordinary, and of course we were not disappointed. Tropical storm/hurricane ETA was meandering through the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico approaching Cuba as the event got underway. It seemed clear that the race might be affected by the weekend.

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