Justin Wilson and Michael Shank Racing with Curb/Agajanian announced today that they will team up again for this year’s Rolex 24 At Daytona. Fully recovered from the back injury sustained last August, which forced him to miss the remainder of the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series, Justin is more eager than ever to get back on track. The famous sportscar endurance event, which celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year and kicks off GRAND-AM’s 2012 Rolex Sports Car Series, is the perfect way to start the year.
Justin will once again partner with former RuSPORT team-mate and NASCAR Sprint Cup driver AJ Allmendinger as they join full time pilots Ozz Negri and two-time Pro-Am Champion John Pew in the No. 60 MSR Daytona Ford-Riley entry.
It will be Justin’s fifth Rolex start and his fourth with MSR Daytona and, having been overall runner-up twice, he’s hungrier than ever to climb on the top step of the podium.
“It’s great to be back," said Justin. “Mike always does such a great job with his team and it’s a privilege to be a part of it. It’s great to team up with John, Ozz, and AJ. It’s a good group and I really think we have a good chance to win. I think we just need to keep working hard, keep our heads down and see what happens. I did a couple of laps this morning in the car which was my first time in the new Riley and it felt great so I’m cautiously optimistic about what we can do. Hopefully it’s going to play out well for us."
The race marks MSR Daytona’s ninth consecutive Rolex 24 At Daytona campaign and they too are looking to go one better than a previous-best result of 2nd place, earned in 2006 with Ozz, Justin and AJ co-driving with Mark Patterson.
“I couldn’t be happier to get Justin and AJ back for the 24 this year," said team owner Mike Shank. “We know that it takes speed, smarts, and experience to get to the podium here and having guys like Justin and AJ on board for the 24 is a big advantage. They are team players, and everyone is really focused on a big result. We have some learning to do with the new DP still, but I’m encouraged by how it’s gone in testing and hopefully we can have a productive three days here and come back for the race, ready to go."
The team and drivers began their preparations for the race at the three day Roar Before the Rolex 24 test at Daytona International Speedway which started Friday. The race itself is on January 28-29 2012.
MSR Daytona will finalize the driver line up for the team’s second Rolex 24 DP entry this weekend, with announcements to follow.