Just 22 days until the 2019 Rolex 24 at Daytona (a part of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship)! As for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, all participating teams and drivers will have access to the circuit for three days to prepare for the race. In France, Test Day takes place two weeks before the main event, in Daytona it's called the Roar Before the Rolex 24, this weekend.
From Friday to Sunday, 52 of the 180 drivers at last year's edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans will show up in Florida for the Roar Before the Rolex 24. Among them, Fernando Alonso - 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans winner with TOYOTA GAZOO Racing - and his teammate Kamui Kobayashi will share the wheel of a Cadillac DPi fielded by Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R. team with Renger van der Zande and Jordan Taylor. Though Kamui Kobayashi will be a rookie at the upcoming race, Fernando Alonso already took part in the 2018 edition with a Ligier JS P2 entered by United Autosports.
In the GTLM class (the equivalent of LMGTE Pro at Le Mans), three teams from the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans will attend the three days of testing: Corvette Racing, Ford Chip Ganassi Team (with Le Mans native Sébastien Bourdais) and Porsche GT Team.
Also set to participate, an all-female driver line-up at the wheel of an Acura NSX GT3 fielded by the Meyer Shank Racing Curb-Agajanian team. Jackie Heinricher, Katherine Legge, Ana Beatriz, Simona de Silvestro and Christina Nielsen (the only woman at the start at the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans) will compete in the GTD class. Alex Zanardi, an Italian driver who lost his legs in a tragic accident at the Lausitzring in CART in 2001, will take the wheel of a BMW M8 GTE (adapted for his disability) shared with Jesse Krohn, John Edwards and Mozzie Mostert. LMP2 class winner at last year's 24 Hours of Le Mans with Signatech Alpine Matmut, Nicolas Lapierre will climb back in American team DragonSpeed's ORECA LMP2. Juan Pablo Montoya, third in LMP2 at the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans with United Autosports, will also take part in the Roar at the wheel of a Acura DPi fielded by Acura Team Penske.
Click on this link for the provisional Entry List for the 2019 Roar Before the Rolex 24.
The start at the 57th running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona will be given Saturday 26 January at 14:00 local time in Florida.
PHOTO: Corvette Racing will participate in the 2019 Rolex 24 at Daytona in the GTLM class (the equivalent of LMGTE Pro at the 24 Hours of Le Mans).