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GRC Daytona
The sixth stop for this year’s Red Bull Global Rallycross season was held at the Daytona International Speedway, and it proved just how much excitement this racing series possesses. Despite the high temperatures and crazy humidity in Daytona, the series still provided an excellent experience for fans to watch some fender-banging, dirt-chucking racing.

2014 Red Bull Global Rallycross Makes its First Stop in Daytona, Doesn’t Disappoint

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We started the race weekend a little early with a ride along with the eventual race winner, Rhys Millen. Sitting shotgun in his race-prepped Hyundai Veloster, Millen gave use two laps at full speed of the course. From the beginning, the massive tabletop jump in the middle of the track seemed to be the most daunting element to get psyched about, but this car was like being on the craziest roller coaster you can imagine with 600 hp on tap from the turbocharged engine and brakes that can get the car to stop – or slide – on a dime.

Hitting the only jump was by far the most exciting part of the ride as it launched the car at least 10 feet in the air. Surprisingly, despite the speed and distance, the landing was incredibly smooth, but we’re sure the car and the driver played a big hand in that. After the jump, a bunch of sharp turns awaited coming just inches from tire barriers before the track opened up back to the start line where speeds approached 120 mph.

Using a good portion of the Daytona’s road course, the GRC track measured almost a mile in length of which about three-quarters was paved. This made the Daytona track more than twice as long as most of the other tracks GRC has raced at this year with track times more than a minute compared to the low-30-second range for previous races.

The added length made for some amazing action through the qualifying, practices, heat races and final race. The fan experience is really where the GRC shines with plenty of on-track action to complement the up-close access that its fans have to the drivers and pits. In between track stints, the cars are torn apart and repaired, and the whole time, fans can stand just feet away to see what really goes on behind the scenes of such a race.

Between the 600-hp SuperCars and the spec-series, 300-hp GRC Lites, there was always some sort of racing for fans to watch over the two-day event. Both Friday and Saturday definitely gave fans their money’s worth in terms of racing as it seemed that there was always some racing going on out on track.

In the end, Millen and his Hyundai Veloster proved victorious (a first for both Millen and Hyundai in GRC racing), but Nelson Piquet Jr. is still in the lead for driver championship and Ford has a commanding lead for the manufacturer championship. Following the cancellation of the Detroit race earlier this month, the next event coming up for GRC is the doubleheader in Los Angeles, which goes down on September 20th.

 
 
 
 
 

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