CORE autosport has confirmed the addition of Romain Dumas and Loic Duval to its lineup alongside Jon Bennett and Colin Braun for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, as part of the team’s step up to the top Prototype class.
The four drivers will pilot the team’s new Oreca 07 Gibson in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season opener.
Despite being former FIA World Endurance Champions and overall winners at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, both Dumas and Duval have previous experience with the Oreca LMP2 car, in WEC competition.
Duval also took part in this year’s Rolex 24 at the wheel of DragonSpeed’s Oreca.
“I am excited to share our new Oreca 07 with an amazing group of all-star teammates,” team owner/driver Jon Bennett said. “Both Romain Dumas and Loic Duval are simply two of the most talented race drivers in the world.
“Both Romain and Loic have unmatched experience in 24-hour endurance competitions. I know Colin and I share our new teammates’ passion for adding the Rolex 24 overall win to our collection of victories.”
Dumas will make his return to Daytona after missing the event in recent years due to taking part in the Dakar Rally.
“I’m really happy to go back to Daytona,” he said. “For a long a time I’ve been looking to come back, but Dakar is always at the same time.
“This year, as soon as I get the opportunity with CORE, I decided not to do Dakar.
“Loic and I were teammates at Audi in 2012 and as soon as I heard it was a possibility for him to be part of the team, I was very enthusiastic. We live very close to each other—eight miles away—so we have a good relationship.”
Duval said that the decision to join the team for Daytona was an easy one after talking to Dumas.
“The main thing I know about CORE is they are the GT factory team for Porsche and to be honest that is about it,” he said. “I spoke a little bit with Romain and he explained to me about how professional the team is.
“It wasn’t a surprise though, because when you are a factory team for Porsche it means a lot already. I knew that the team was first class.
“I’ve been doing some testing back in Europe and I was racing in Bahrain in WEC in the ORECA.
“It’s definitely good training for me because I will not race any car from now to Daytona, so I’m quite sharp in the LMP2 ORECA, which for me also makes a lot of sense to be fully fit for Daytona.”