Rising to the Daytona 24 Challenge
While it’s still some weeks until all the competitors for the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship are on track together (The Prologue, Le Castellet, on 25/26th March), a very large number of WEC drivers will this weekend be racing in the Rolex 24 at Daytona in Florida, the opening round of the IMSA Weather Tech Sportscar Championship season.
World Endurance Champion Brendon Hartley will be alongside new Ford GT driver Andy Priaulx and recently retired Toyota ambassador Alex Wurz in a Daytona Prototype, and the New Zealander will be competing against a large number of names and faces familiar in WEC paddocks including Tequila Patron ESM drivers Scott Sharp and Ed Brown and SMP Racing’s Nicolas Minassian and Kirill Ladygin.
Audi Sport’s Marcel Fässler is making a return to 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours LMGTE champion Corvette Racing for Daytona, and he will be racing against a host of WEC factory drivers from Ferrari, Ford and Porsche in the GTLM class, including 2015 Le Mans winner Nick Tandy.
Aston Martin Racing’s Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy, Richie Stanaway and Mathias Lauda will be going for glory in the GTD class, together with familiar names in nearly every other entry.
ACO President Pierre Fillon and WEC CEO Gerard Neveu will also be present over the weekend to help Daytona International Speedway and IMSA celebrate the inauguration of its impressive “Daytona Rising” project.
Good luck to all competitors (a full list can be found HERE) in what promises to be a battle royal.
Photo credit: Ford GT - John Dagys, Sportscar365.com, with grateful thanks; Daytona International Speedway's new buildings.