Bubba Wallace adds Rolex Weekend Daytona race to his schedule; will drive a Toyota Supra

Bubba Wallace adds Daytona's road course to his 2024 racing schedule.

Bubba Wallace, who has said improving on road courses is a priority, has added Daytona’s road course to his 2024 racing schedule.

Wallace will join fellow NASCAR racers John Hunter Nemechek and Corey Heim as co-drivers of a Toyota Supra in a four-hour race Jan. 26, preceding the Jan. 27-28 Rolex 24 at Daytona.

The BMW Endurance Challenge serves as season opener for IMSA’s Michelin Pilot Challenge Series. It traditionally runs on the Friday before the Saturday-Sunday marathon that begins IMSA’s WeatherTech Championship season on Daytona's 3.56-mile sports-car course.

The NASCAR trio’s Toyota will be fielded by Texas-based Smooge Racing, which is headed by veteran racer Kevin Conway, who will co-drive a second Supra with John Geesbreght and Corey Lewis. The Toyotas will compete in the series' Grand Sport class — the Michelin Pilot series also features a Touring Car class.

This will be Wallace’s first entry in IMSA, which has seen many NASCAR racers moonlight at Daytona over the years. But he’s not a stranger to Daytona’s road course, though his finishes were less than stellar.

NASCAR ran a race on Daytona’s road course in both 2020 and ’21 as part of a revamped schedule brought on by Covid restrictions. Wallace finished 25th and 26th in those races, but has made steady yet modest improvement in recent road-racing events.

He finished between 12th and 18th in the last four road races of last season, and posted his career best finishes (fifth and seventh) in 2022.

Both of Wallace’s Daytona co-drivers are coming off big years. Nemechek won seven times in NASCAR’s Xfinity Series in 2023 and this year moves to the Cup Series and pilots the No. 42 Toyota for Legacy Motor Club.

Heim was a three-time winner in the Truck Series last year and finished third in the championship, driving for Tricon Garage. He returns to that team this year but will also get several starts in the Xfinity Series with Sam Hunt Racing.

All IMSA cars will be at Daytona a week ahead of the season openers. The three-day test session — the "Roar Before the Rolex 24" — is scheduled for Friday through Sunday, Jan. 19-21.
Ken Willis
Source: Yahoo Sports