A total of 50 cars are set to take part in next weekend’s Roar Before the Rolex 24, providing a near-complete look into the field that will make up January’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season opener.
IMSA released the entry list for the mandatory three-day test at Daytona International Speedway on Wednesday, featuring a star-studded field and one of the deepest talent pools in recent history.
ENTRY LIST: Roar Before 24
Twenty cars are set to do battle in the Prototype class, highlighted by the arrivals of Acura Team Penske and the new Mazda Team Joest outfit, each fielding a pair of factory DPis.
There are no major surprises on the entry list in the P class, other than the absence of the D3+ Transformers Ligier JS P217 Gibson, a program that had been announced earlier this year.
On the driver front, 2017 Prototype Challenge champion James French and Kyle Masson are listed in Performance Tech Motorsports’ Oreca 07 Gibson, with Nick Boulle as the third driver in the new AFS/PR1 Motorsports Ligier JS P217 Gibson effort.
Additionally, Austin Cindric is listed to drive JDC-Miller Motorsports’ second Oreca LMP2 car, with Gustavo Menezes added as the fourth pilot in the team’s new GAINSCO-backed entry.
The GT Le Mans class sees a nine-car entry, represented by the returning factory efforts from Corvette Racing, BMW Team RLL, Porsche GT Team and Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, all with its previously confirmed driver lineups.
Reigning FIA WEC GT World Champion Alessandro Pier Guidi is so far the only confirmed driver in the No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTE.
The Houston-based team’s long-awaited entry into GT Daytona now appears official, with Ricardo Perez, Martin Fuentes and Santiago Creel listed in the No. 82 Ferrari 488 GT3.
It is one of 21 entries in GTD, that includes confirmation of Magnus Racing’s return to the WeatherTech Championship, as well as a handful of European entries for the season-opener.
Grasser Racing Team has entered two Lamborghini Huracan GT3s alongside Land Motorsport (Audi R8 LMS), Manthey Racing (Porsche 911 GT3 R) and Spirit of Race (Ferrari).
Magnus’ Audi, meanwhile, will see Andrew Davis and newly crowned Intercontinental GT Challenge champion Markus Winkelhock join full-season drivers John Potter and Andy Lally.
Porsche Young Professional Mathieu Jaminet and Robert Renauer, meanwhile, complete the lineup in Wright Motorsports’ new Porsche entry, with Tim Pappas listed alongside Patrick Lindsey and Joerg Bergmeister in Park Place Motorsports’ Porsche.
This year’s Rolex 24 class-winning Alegra Motorsports outfit is not currently entered for the test, with questions surrounding the team’s participation for the race.
Also absent from the list in GTD is Wayne Taylor Racing, which had been working on a two-car Lamborghini effort.
Turner Motorsport, which has also yet to confirm its 2018 program, however, is listed with a single BMW M6 GT3 for Jens Klingmann.
The three-day test runs from Jan. 5-7, with a qualifying session to determine garage and pit lane allocations in the Rolex 24 field set for Sunday.