AJ Allmendinger is the first officially confirmed driver for Meyer Shank Racing’s Acura DPi effort, with the veteran driver set for his 15th appearance with the Ohio-based team in the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
Allmendinger will join the team’s two yet-to-be-announced two full-season drivers, as well as an expected Michelin Endurance Cup-only driver in the No. 60 Acura ARX-05 for the 2021 season-opening round.
“More than anything, I am so pumped for Mike and the team to become a factory Acura DPi team,” said Allmendinger. “No one deserves this more than Mike Shank. His hard work and dedication is paying off and I am happy to be a small part of that.”
First joining MSR for the 2006 Rolex 24 with the team’s DP, Allmendinger was a key factor in scoring the team’s first Rolex 24 podium finish that year.
The nearly two-decade long relationship between Allmendinger and MSR has seen him race 8,692 laps around Daytona International Speedway, collect three Rolex 24 podiums, and team for victory in 2012.
“That was probably one of the biggest moments in my career,” said Allmendinger.
“Mike and MSR worked so hard to get that win, and to be a part of such a monumental victory in the team’s career is something that I will always cherish.
“I can’t wait to get back to Prototype racing. The DPi machines are very quick and look so fun to drive.
“I am sure it will take me a few laps to get used to the speed and downforce, but I’ll be surrounded by a great team and I know that I will get up to speed fairly quick.
“I can’t thank Mike, MSR and Honda HPD for allowed me to drive for them. Time to get another Rolex!”
While yet to be announced, Sportscar365 understands that Olivier Pla and reigning DPi champion Dane Cameron, who remains a Honda Performance Development-contracted driver, are likely to be named full-season drivers for the program.