Daytona 24: Pirelli preview

PIRELLI'S GRAND-AM ROLEX SPORTS CAR SERIES DEBUT IN DAYTONA PART OF WORLDWIDE WEEKEND LAUNCH FOR ITALIAN TIRE GIANT Daytona Beach, FL Taking the spotlight in North America on what will be its biggest weekend of racing in history, the Pirelli...

PIRELLI'S GRAND-AM ROLEX SPORTS CAR SERIES DEBUT IN DAYTONA PART OF WORLDWIDE WEEKEND LAUNCH FOR ITALIAN TIRE GIANT

Daytona Beach, FL Taking the spotlight in North America on what will be its biggest weekend of racing in history, the Pirelli Tire era in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No.16 will officially begin with the 46 th annual Rolex 24 at Daytona, January 24 27.

While top Grand-Am Rolex Series driver and teams in two classes will be doing battle on the 3.56-mile road course at Daytona International Speedway (DIS), half a world away in Monte Carlo the competitors of the World Rally Championship (WRC) will also help Pirelli usher in a new era of competition in that premier series. Pirelli is the new official tire supplier in both the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and the WRC, and each series will run its first official event with their new tire partner at simultaneous races on the same weekend.

Pirelli pulled out the stops during Grand-Am's Daytona Test Days at DIS earlier this month where Rolex Series Daytona Prototype and GT teams racked up an incredible total of 11,616 laps of testing in just three days the equivalent of more than 41,353 miles.

As impressive as those numbers are, however, they will pale in comparison to the laps and miles that Rolex Series teams and drivers will turn in for the Rolex 24. With roughly 70 teams set for the challenge of a full day of racing and the practice and qualifying that goes along with it, the amount of miles that teams will run could be the equivalent of a week's worth of non-stop trips around the world.

To support this kind of effort, Pirelli is bringing more than just the latest P-Zero racing tires to Daytona early this week. In fact, some of the most important vehicles riding on Pirellis may not be Rolex Series sports cars at all. Pirelli will have no less than six support truck transporters at Daytona with an additional 20 inventory truck trailers tucked away in the infield. As far as people power, a team of 150 skilled Pirelli Tire technicians and various other personnel will work in three shifts to handle all that the Rolex 24 can throw at them. Calling on only the best from around the world, Pirelli personnel assigned to the Rolex 24 come not only from the United States and Canada and, of course, Italy, but from as far away as Australia as well.

So, what about tires? Pirelli is bringing a whopping 14,000 P-Zero racing tires to Daytona, including 5,000 rain tires. Even in the illustrious and winning history of Pirelli, the volume of tires being sent to Daytona is by far the most units ever that the Italian manufacturer has sent to a single racing event.

-credit: pirelli

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Series Grand-Am