De Ferran Motorsports claimed its second American Le Mans Series race win in succession with a commanding performance by Simon Pagenaud and Gil de Ferran at Miller Motorsports Park.
The team benefited from getting into a clear lead at the start while its main rival Highcroft Acura was held up for several laps by the Intersport Lola.
Just as he had at the Utah track last year - when he battled past all the Audis, Acuras and Porsches to lead the race -- Jon Field used the advantage gained from his turbocharged car at high altitude and on the very long start/finish straight to blast up the order at the start, claiming second by the first corner.
By the time Highcroft's Scott Sharp had got past Field, the De Ferran car was 20 seconds ahead. That gap grew further when the Highcroft car was slightly delayed at its first pitstop, and by the chequered flag Pagenaud's margin of victory was over a minute, as the team celebrated the first anniversary of its debut race in fine style.
Acura completed a one-two-three and a clean sweep of prototype class wins as Fernandez Racing's Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz brought their LMP2 Acura home in third.
That result looked unlikely in the first stint, as Diaz was pushed back to seventh overall and the LMP2 rival Dyson Lola-Mazdas ran first and second. But the No. 6 Dyson car lost several laps receiving mechanical attention in the pits mid-race, and Marino Franchitti and Butch Leitzinger in the No. 20 entry ended up behind the Fernandez car after making a late fuel stop - their rivals having opted to save fuel and not make a third pit visit.
Leitzinger closed right in on Fernandez on the final lap as the Mexican tried to lap Smith in the delayed second Lola-Mazda, but ultimately Dyson missed out on a first class win of 2009 by 0.585sec.
The No. 45 Flying Lizard Porsche of Patrick Long and Jorg Bergmeister took a straightforward GT2 victory, edging clear of the No. 87 Farnbacher Loles Porsche throughout. The Risi Ferrari came back through to third after being assisted into a spin by one of the Rahal Letterman BMWs at the start.
Martin and Melanie Snow came out on top in the new Challenge class for invited GT3 Porsches, which has been added to the grid this year to ensure fields remain at an acceptable level during these trying economic times.