The Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates team will bring a headline grabbing line-up to this months Rolex 24 at Daytona, the championship winning team confirming their eight man team for their two car Daytona Prototype effort.
Series champions Memo Rojas and Scott Pruett will lead the charge (numerically at least) in the no.01 car, sharing with Joey Hand – an ALMS fixture as well as a Grand-Am veteran – and Graham Rahal, the young American in his first race start under the Ganassi banner ahead of a full campaign in INDYCAR.
The team's second Riley/BMW machine encapsulates all that is good about the Rolex 24, gathering together some of the best drivers in America for one entry. The four men represent Ganassi's NASCAR and INDYCAR operations, with Juan Montoya and Jamie McMurray joining Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti.
Combined the eight men can lay claim to 12 championships, eight Rolex 24 wins, four Indianapolis 500s and a Daytona 500 win – that coming from McMurray last February, a highlight of a season which also included a win in NASCAR's annual visit to Indianapolis.
“The Rolex 24 At Daytona is always exciting for our team, especially because it involves so many of our drivers from all different series,” Ganassi explains. “There are so many elements out of the drivers’ hands that need to come together, in order to have a shot at winning this event. That’s what I love about it. You have to not only be good, but you also have to have a little bit of luck on your side to succeed in a race that lasts 24 hours.”
The crews will aim to improve on Ganassi's showing last year. Pruett and Rojas were part of a crew which had to settle for second after the sister car had dominated the opening third of the race before mechanical problems forced a retirement.
The Rolex 24 at Daytona is January 29-30, but the 'Roar Before The 24' test session takes place this weekend.