By Christopher DeHarde, Staff Writer
DAYTONA — Two of the top contenders in the Rolex 24 at Daytona have collided during the fourth hour of the race, with one car still in the garage over 30 minutes after the incident took place.
Harry Tincknell in the No. 55 Mazda Team Joest RT24-P DPi was trying to overtake Helio Castroneves in the No. 7 Acura Team Penske ARX-05 DPi as the pair headed to the bus stop chicane on the backstretch of the Daytona International Speedway.
Tincknell went down Castroneves’s inside, but the Brazilian never saw the British racer make his move and turned in at his normal turn-in point. The resulting contact sent the No. 7 into the barriers with the rear of the car hitting the same tire barrier that the front of the car hit during qualifying on Thursday afternoon.
Castroneves drove the Acura to the garage area as the Penske crew started to repair the DPi.
“It’s not even four hours into the race,” said an exasperated Castroneves to NBC. “I was taking my time dealing with traffic, obviously there was traffic in front of me, I was just taking it easy and not diving into it because both of would have been in trouble, and [Tincknell] just decided to dive into it in a place, the bus stop that’s probably 120 mph.”
Tincknell was handed accident responsibility for his part in the collision and had to do a pit lane drive-thru penalty.
The No. 77 Mazda has led the majority of the race but is currently second to the No. 6 Acura DPi.
Castroneves’s car was in the garage for 39 minutes and is now last in the field.