Tag:Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona
Posted on: January 29, 2012 6:46 pm
Edited on: January 29, 2012 8:07 pm

NASCAR stars shine in Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona

By Pete Pistone

(Allmendinger was part of a quartet of drivers to bring Ford back to victory lane at Daytona)

A NASCAR contingent of drivers competing in this year's Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona Grand Am race flexed their muscles in the 50th running of the sports car classic.

A.J. Allmendinger was part of the winning Daytona Prototype team while other NASCAR drivers like Jamie McMurray and 2011 Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year also fared well.

On his ninth attempt, team owner Michael Shank finally captured the sports car classic with his team of Oswaldo Negri, John Pew, Allmendinger and Justin Wilson in the #60 Michael Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian Ford Riley surviving a tight battle for the lead in the final hours to take home the checkered flag.

“Right now I'm just going to take this for what it's worth, not think about anything for a couple days, and just enjoy it,” Allmendinger said. “Right now it's the biggest win I've ever had because we've worked for seven years to get to this point with Mike Shank, and we've been so close so many times.”

Finishing a few seconds behind the #60 Ford was the pole-winning #8 Starworks Motorsport Ford Riley and Ryan Dalziel, Alex Popow, Lucas Luhr, Allan McNish and Enzo Potolicchio. Shank Racing took the final spot on the podium with the #6 Ford Riley with NASCAR's Michael McDowell, Jorge Goncalvez, Gustavo Yacaman and Sunoco Rolex 24 Driver Challenge winner Felipe Nasr.

Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing's Juan Pablo Montoya and McMurray were members of the fourth place finishing team in owner Chip Ganassi's entry.

In the GT class, the #44 Magnus Racing Porsche with John Potter, Lally, Richard Lietz and Rene Rast were victorious.

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Posted on: December 2, 2011 3:35 pm

Waltrip's team enters Daytona Rolex 24 Hours

Posted by Pete Pistone

From News Release

LAS VEGAS – Michael Waltrip Racing owners Rob Kauffman and Michael Waltrip announced today that they will race in the 50<sup>th</sup> annual Rolex 24 at Daytona on Jan. 26-29. The AF Waltrip entry is a joint project of multiple sports car championship winning AF Corse and Michael Waltrip Racing. Joining the pair behind the wheel of the new Grand Am version of the Ferrari 458 GT will be action sports star and four-time North American rally champion Travis Pastrana and world-renowned road racing veteran Rui Aguas.    

"We have been looking at expanding the organization in the sports car world and this is a great next step," said Kauffman. "The Rolex 24 at Daytona is a world class event with huge historic relevance in motor sports, and bringing a Ferrari to the 50<sup>th</sup> running is a terrific opportunity. We raced Petit Le Mans and Le Mans itself this year, and plan to increase our presence in North American road racing.” 

"My racing career will forever be linked to Daytona, because it was defined on those high banks," said Waltrip, a two-time Daytona 500 champion. "I've raced at Daytona for 25 years and I can't wait to turn left at the end of pit road and race through the infield for the first time. It will be special to share this experience with Rob, Rui and Travis."  

The AF Waltrip team will be working in close collaboration with the Italy based AF Corse sports car team which fielded Ferraris for Waltrip and Kauffman at the 24 Hours of Le Mans last June. Kauffman previously joined Justin Bell and Aguas in a podium third-place finish at Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in October.  

“We’re going with every intention on standing on the podium after the 24 hours,” Kauffman said. “Those are pretty high expectations for a very competitive race, but we plan on making this a top notch effort." 

Kauffman, a native New Yorker who lives in London working as the European manager of Fortress Investments, partnered with Waltrip in October 2007. MWR fields Toyota Camrys in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series from its 140,000-square-foot shop in Cornelius, N.C., for Waltrip, Mark Martin, Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr. 

MWR’s participation in international racing events is part of a worldwide business strategy and a way to promote the team on a global stage. In the last year, MWR’s international effort has included visits to Le Mans, the Goodwood Festival of Speed in England, Toyota Motorsports Festival in Japan as well as races and tests in Dubai, Spa Italy and Portugal. 

The 50th Anniversary of the Rolex 24 At Daytona. The famous twice-around-the-clock challenge kicks off the international motorsports calendar, as well as the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series and features a star-studded line-up of drivers from around the world battling on Daytona’s demanding high-banked road course.

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