Sometimes we have to tip our hats to Florida. Yes, Florida. While it often endures—and, frankly, engenders—the nation’s collective mockery, the Sunshine State is a boon to automotive enthusiasts. Racetracks pepper the landscape, but none is more iconic than Daytona Beach’s Daytona International Speedway.
While the track may arguably be better known for hosting NASCAR stock-car racing, the tri-oval speedway is perhaps best enjoyed by driver and spectator alike at the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona sports-car race. For one full day, racing teams fight tooth and nail to push themselves and their cars to the limit around a 3.5-plus-mile circuit that combines an infield road course with portions of the track’s banked tri-oval turns.
While outright speed is important in racing, endurance races like the 24 Hours at Daytona reward vehicle reliability and driver consistency just as much. Many cars won’t make it to the finish line; engines will overheat, tires will fail, and crashes will cause more damage than teams have time to repair fully.
Those cars that survive to see the checkered flag often roll across the start/finish line with battered body panels, exhausted drivers, and a fine coating of Florida’s finest entomological specimens. But you don’t need to be in the driver’s seat to experience the thrills of Daytona. Our photographer Marc Urbano was on-site this year and captured exhilarating photos of the action. Head into the gallery and enjoy the rush of this year’s 24 via his lens.