DAYTONA BEACH, FLA., FEB. 3 -- American road racing star Hurley Haywood and a quartet of Europeans completed an almost faultless drive today in winning the Daytona 24 Hours in a Porsche 962C prototype.
The victory is a record fifth in the event for Haywood, from nearby Jacksonville, as well as the fourth for teammate Bob Wollek of France.
Also taking turns in the car fielded by Reinhold Joest of Germany were countrymen John Winter and Frank Jelinski and Frenchman Henri Pescarolo. It was the first 24-hour victory for Jelinski, while Pescarolo has four LeMans 24 Hours victories. Winter, who was in the car at the end, has one victory at LeMans and Haywood has won twice at LeMans.
Haywood broke out of a tie for the most Daytona 24 Hours victories with the late Peter Gregg, his former friend and teammate. But it was his first victory in the twice-around-the-clock event since 1979.
The victory for Porsche gave the German manufacturer its 18th victory in this race in 23 tries, although Jaguars had won two of the last three.
The winning car averaged 106.663 mph, completing 719 laps around the 3.56-mile Daytona International Speedway circuit, a total of 2,559.64 miles.
The winning car led the last 6 1/2 hours. While virtually every other car in the race had mechanical problems or faced some other hurdle, the leaders, who came to the front during the early morning hours, had only a flat tire and a minor overheating problem to overcome.
The European Group C Nissan R90C finished second, 18 laps and 2.22 seconds behind.
The leaders' closest competitor earlier today was the Porsche of Mario Andretti and his sons, Michael and Jeff. They finished fifth. They took the lead briefly after daybreak, but a bolt that sheared through the flywheel and into the starter motor forced a pit stop of more than one hour.