The Rolex 24 is one of racing’s biggest events of the year. It is the unofficial start to the racing year. The Rolex 24 is also one of the most grueling races for drivers and crew members alike. It is an endurance test that brings the best drivers in the world together for a very historic event. This year there will be four NASCAR drivers who will take part in the Rolex 24.
NASCAR’s Defending Champion To Enter His First Rolex 24
Chase Elliott has become NASCAR’s newest road course king so it is only fitting that he has entered into the Rolex 24. Chase Elliott will be in the number 31 Cadillac DPI class with Felipe Nasr, Pipo Derani, and Mike Conway. Elliott will have an advantage going into the Rolex 24 because NASCAR made its debut at the Daytona road course last year where he won that race. Chase Elliott has become a road course master and he will look to keep that going this weekend.
Jimmie Johnson Makes His 8th Rolex 24 Start
Following Jimmie Johnson‘s final full-time season in NASCAR, Jimmie Johnson will be taking on some new challenges in 2021. His first new challenge will be running in the Rolex 24. Johnson will be running the number 48 Cadillac DPI of Action Express Racing with two-time Rolex 24 winner Kamui Kobayashi, Indy 500 champion Simon Pagenaud, and Mike Rockenfeller. Prior to this weekend, Jimmie Johnson has made seven starts at the Rolex 24. He has had two second-place finishes that came in the 2005 and 2008 Rolex 24-hour events. With Chad Knaus returning to the 48 team, Jimmie Johnson will be a driver to keep an eye on all race.
Austin Dillon Makes Rolex 24 Debut
This weekend Austin Dillon will make his debut in the Rolex 24. He will be in the number 51 Ligier LMP. He will be teamed up with Cody Ware, Salih Yoluc, and Sven Muller. Austin Dillon will be looking for a win in his debut but this race will be a huge learning experience. With all the road courses being added to the new NASCAR Cup Series schedule this may help in the long run. It will help Dillon get better at road racing, making him a better competitor for the upcoming season
AJ Allmendinger has run in several Rolex 24 events. 2021 will be no different as AJ will run in the 2021 edition of the Rolex 24. He will be in the number 60 Acura DPI with Dane Cameron, Olivier Pla, and former NASCAR Cup Series driver Juan Pablo Montoya. This has been a fast team during each practice with the Acura winning second practice. AJ has always been a road course ringer and he will be chasing after that famous Rolex watch to add to his career accomplishments.
These four drivers have already made their names known in NASCAR. Each driver will have different goals to accomplish during the race but all have one similar goal, to make their name known around the world. A win at the Rolex 24 would be a career-defining moment. The pressure is on for all these teams. A crash would be devastating as this is still a regular-season race for IMSA. It would be a blemish on any of these four drivers to cost a team points by crashing out of this endurance test. A lot of pressure will be apart of this weekend but it can all be worth it with a win at the “World Center of Racing”.