Maldonado to make Rolex 24 debut

Formula 1 race winner Pastor Maldonado will make his Rolex 24 at Daytona debut next month as part of an expanded two-car assault from the DragonSpeed team.

Maldonado to make Rolex 24 debut

The Venezuelan will race the Oreca LMP2 car in which he is contesting the the 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship superseason in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship opener on January 26-27.

Maldonado will share the car with his regular WEC partner Roberto Gonzalez and a further pair of yet-to-be-determined drivers.

Team boss Elton Julian told Motorsport.com: "Roberto has been talking about doing Daytona for a while and then decided to go ahead after the positive [second place] result at the Shanghai WEC round last month."

Julian revealed that he had wanted to run team regular Anthony Davidson in the car as well, but was precluded by the rules for what is now a pro-am category after the P2s were put in a separate class to the DPi machinery for 2019.

"The LMP2 rules say you can't have two platinum-graded drivers, so rules are rules and we can't do it," Julian said.

The WEC car is due to arrive in the US from Shanghai on January 1, but Julian is hopeful of being able to make the second and third days of the 'Roar Before The 24' test at Daytona on January 4-6.

DragonSpeed has posted a Daytona entry for its WEC Oreca alongside the car it runs in the European Le Mans Series, which will be raced by Nicolas Lapierre, Ben Hanley, Henrik Hedman and James Allen.

Allen, who raced DragonSpeed's LMP1 BR Engineering chassis at the Fuji and Shanghai WEC rounds, is joining the team in what is being billed as a development deal for the 22-year-old.

He will also contest next year's ELMS with the team alongside Hanley and Hedman and has been pencilled in for some IndyCar testing should DragonSpeed's plans for a part season in the US single-seater series come together.

#31 Dragonspeed Oreca 07: Roberto Gonzalez, Pastor Maldonado, Anthony Davidson

#31 Dragonspeed Oreca 07: Roberto Gonzalez, Pastor Maldonado, Anthony Davidson

Photo by: JEP / LAT Images

shares
comments
McLaren to run in IMSA GT Daytona
Previous article

McLaren to run in IMSA GT Daytona

Next article

Barrichello to race JDC-Miller Cadillac in Rolex 24

Barrichello to race JDC-Miller Cadillac in Rolex 24
Load comments
The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence Prime

The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence

Following the latest convergence connection permitting Le Mans Hypercars from the FIA World Endurance Championship to compete against LMDh entries in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship from 2023, it could open up enticing options not only to manufacturers but also for the calendar and race formats

WEC
Jul 13, 2021
Why a Mazda IMSA Prototype title would bring bitter joy Prime

Why a Mazda IMSA Prototype title would bring bitter joy

Can Mazda win this year’s IMSA Prototype championship? Undoubtedly. But it will be the culmination of an achingly hard struggle, after which the brand has decided to quit. David Malsher-Lopez tells the story of a bizarre blend of heartache and positivity.

IMSA
Apr 6, 2021
The GTE dilemma that IMSA has created for the WEC Prime

The GTE dilemma that IMSA has created for the WEC

The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s decision to scrap its GT Le Mans class for 2022 raises the question of whether the FIA World Endurance Championship should phase out GTE cars. But it's a much harder decision than it appears on the surface.

WEC
Feb 3, 2021
Nine things to watch at the 2021 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona Prime

Nine things to watch at the 2021 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona

After a 100-minute sprint race to whet the appetite, the 2021 IMSA SportsCar Championship gets underway properly this weekend. With plenty of significant changes during the winter, here are the key points you need to keep an eye on

IMSA
Jan 29, 2021
Why Magnussen is relishing a fresh start in sportscars Prime

Why Magnussen is relishing a fresh start in sportscars

Having gone over seven years without a race win through spells with McLaren, Renault and Haas, Kevin Magnussen's departure from Formula 1 for IMSA with big-hitters Chip Ganassi Racing could give him what he craves most - a chance of success

IMSA
Jan 29, 2021
Oliver Gavin's Corvette Racing highlights Prime

Oliver Gavin's Corvette Racing highlights

Oliver Gavin has stepped down from the full-time Corvette Racing line-up after a stellar career with the team spanning nearly 20 years. He looks back on a stint that encompassed, among other successes, five Le Mans 24 Hours victories.

Le Mans
Jan 28, 2021
How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends Prime

How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends

Victory at last year's Spa 24 Hours meant Nick Tandy had completed the unofficial sextuple crown of the world's six biggest endurance races, becoming the first Briton to do so. Ahead of his fresh start with Corvette Racing, he explains how he did it…

Le Mans
Jan 24, 2021
The 12 greatest Sebring 12 Hours ranked Prime

The 12 greatest Sebring 12 Hours ranked

The 2020 edition of the Florida sportscar classic is finally taking place this weekend, eight months after its traditional date in March. That meant there was plenty of time for Motorsport.com to pour over its previous 67 races and select the best.

IMSA
Nov 11, 2020