Schedule + Fan Guide: 2020 GRM Experience at the Rolex 24 At Daytona

Story by David S. Wallens • Photography by Dave Green

 

Lights. Cars. Action.

Welcome to the Rolex 24 At Daytona. Looking to maximize your time at the World Center of Motor Racing? You’re in luck, as our annual spectator guide is back for 2020. This is our home track, so take advantage of our local knowledge.

Schedule of Events

Friday–Sunday, January 3-5
Roar Before the Rolex
The preseason test is open to the public–and if you already have a multiday Rolex ticket, admission is free. If not, then it’s just $15 per day and free for kids 12 and under. See the cars without the crowds.

Friday–Sunday, January 3-5
Scout Days
Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts (and their parents) can camp at the track during the Roar. Activities on the schedule include fishing, garage visits, planetarium shows, a scavenger hunt, a track walk and a facility tour. Tickets purchased before December 15 cost $30 per person.

Saturday, January 4, 12:15 p.m.
IMSA Prototype Challenge Race
The Roar isn’t just about testing, as the Prototype Challenge cars compete that weekend as well.

Wednesday, January 22, 6-8 p.m.
IMSA Twenty-Four Hour Premier at One Daytona
Across the street from the Speedway you’ll find race cars, a moderated driver Q&A and more.

Thursday, January 23
Rolex 24 At Daytona
Gates open for spectators that morning.

Thursday, January 23, 9 a.m.
Grassroots Motorsports Tent Opens
Our infield tent opens for the weekend. Krispy Kreme doughnuts and coffee will be available every morning.

Thursday, January 23, 7:15 p.m.-8:45 p.m.
Night Practice
The cars first take to the track on Wednesday, but watching Thursday’s night practice for the WeatherTech cars has become a bit of a tradition. See the cars on track and at night without having to jockey for a spot on the fence.

Friday, January 24, 11 am
GRM Friday Paddock Tour
Visit Victory Lane, and see teams preparing for the BMW Endurance Challenge in the garages.

Friday, January 24, 11:15 a.m.-11:45 a.m.
Ferrari Challenge Race 1
The Ferrari Challenge cars will return.

Friday, January 24, noon-12:45 p.m.
IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge Grid Walk
Everyone with infield access is invited to pit lane to check out the machines and grab some driver autographs.

Friday, January 24, 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
BMW Endurance Challenge at Daytona
This will be the season-opening race for the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge.

Friday, January 24, 6 p.m.-?
Grassroots Motorsports Welcome Party
Join us and our friends at Ormond Brewing Company for a laid-back evening. Food trucks have been summoned. Address: 301 Division Ave. in Ormond Beach. Ample parking available.

Friday, January 24, 6:45 p.m.-7:15 p.m.
Ferrari Challenge Race 2
This time under the lights.

Saturday, January 25, 9 a.m.
Grassroots Motorsports Tent Opens
We’ll be here all weekend–right on the shores of Lake Lloyd–with Krispy Kreme doughnuts and coffee served in the morning.

Saturday, January 25, 7 a.m.-8:45 a.m.
DIS 5K Run/Walk
Right foot, left foot.

Saturday, January 25, 10:00 a.m.-10:25 a.m.
Rolex 25 Heritage Exhibition
Relive those glory days.

Saturday, January 25, 10:55 a.m.-11:40 a.m.
Autograph Session
Get to the UNOH Fanzone early because the lines will be long.

Saturday, January 25, 12:10 p.m.-1:15 p.m.
Grid Walk
Here’s your last chance to see the cars and crews before the track goes hot. Bring a Sharpie so you can sign the start/finish line. Expect a packed house.

Saturday, January 25, 1:35 p.m.
Green Flag
Go, go, go!

Saturday, January 25, 7 p.m.
GRM Experience Package Dinner
Dinner for GRM Experience Ticket Package holders, located in the big white tent.

Saturday, January 25, 6 p.m.-10 p.m.
Taste of the 24
Food, entertainment and socializing. Tickets also include weekend race access.

Saturday, January 25
Saturday Evening Entertainment
The UNOH Fanzone stage will be jamming all evening with live music as well as karaoke.

Saturday, January 25, 11:50 p.m.
Grassroots Motorsports Midnight Paddock Tour
Our annual paddock tour will depart from our tent.

Sunday, January 26, 8 a.m.-10 a.m.
Café Breakfast Garage
Enjoy a full breakfast buffet for $18. Find it next to the UNOH Fanzone.

Sunday, January 26, 1:35 p.m.
Checkered Flag
Good hustle, everyone, good hustle.

Sunday, January 26, 2 p.m.-4 p.m.
Grassroots Motorsports Tent Cleanup
Help your pals pack up everything. The post-race traffic means you’re not leaving right away anyway.

Where to Watch

None

a. The tops of the garages double as spectator platforms, but the haulers can obstruct the view of the track a bit.
b. The International Horseshoe–also known as Turn 3–offers a great view: glowing brakes, dive-bomb passes and full-throttle acceleration as the cars race down to the Kink.
c. Despite its name, the Kink can be taken flat out. While you’re there, check out the Porsches at the PCA Corral.
d. The west hairpin–officially called Turn 5–is slow and tight. Good place to chill.
e. Walk the garages, especially late at night as the crews work feverishly to get their cars back in the game. Watch your backs for race cars and pit vehicles, though.
f. The infield bleachers will thin out once the race gets going.
g. The Frontstretch grandstand offers a terrific view of the entire track plus lots of food options and those all- important bathrooms. Either walk or take a tram.
h. Need a Moment of Zen? Sit back and watch the cars hug the high banks.
i. Michelin’s crews will change a bunch of tires throughout the weekend. You can’t help, but you can watch.
j. There’s an official selfie spot in front of the facility, featuring parking, right off Daytona International Speedway Boulevard.

IMSA Cars and Classes

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship

Daytona Prototype International (DPi)

  • Homologated, purpose-built, single-seat chassis featuring bodywork that supports the engine supplier.
  • engine suppliers: Acura, Cadillac, Mazda and Nissan. 2019 Daytona qualifying time: 1:34.6

Le Mans Prototype 2 (LMP2)

  • Homologated, purpose-built, single-seat chassis that run a spec Gibson engine. These cars are eligible for Le Mans.
  • 2019 Daytona qualifying time: 1:36.8

GT Le Mans (GTLM)

  • Purpose-built, production-based race cars that are eligible for Le Mans.
  • models: BMW M8 GTE, Chevrolet Corvette C8.R, Ferrari 488 GTE, and Porsche 911 RSR.
  • 2019 Daytona qualifying time: 1:42.9

GT Daytona (GTD)

  • Purpose-built, production-based race cars built to the international GT3 standard.
  • models: Acura NSX GT3, Audi R8 LMS GT3, BMW M6 GT3, Ferrari 488 GT3, Lamborghini Huracán GT3, Lexus RC F GT3, McLaren 720S GT3, Mercedes-AMG GT3 and Porsche 911 GT3 R.
  • 2019 Daytona qualifying time: 1:45.0

IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge

Grand Sport (GS)

  • GT4 homologized sports cars and coupes.
  • models: Aston Martin Vantage GT4, Audi R8 GT4, BMW M4 GT4, Ford Mustang GT4, McLaren 570S GT4, Mercedes-AMG GT4 and Porsche Cayman GT4 MR.
  • 2019 Daytona qualifying time: 1:52.6

Touring Car (TCR)

  • TCR homologized front-drive sedans.
  • models: Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR, Audi RS3 LMS TCR, Honda Civic Type R TCR, Hyundai Veloster N TCR and Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR.
  • 2019 Daytona qualifying time: 1:59.7

Ferrari Challenge North America

  • Spec car is the Ferrari 488 Challenge.
  • 2018 Daytona fast race time: 1:47.9
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Comments
View comments on the GRM forums
300zxfreak
300zxfreak New Reader
12/18/19 10:18 p.m.

And remember to bring scuba gear and appropriate wetsuit. Just sayin’. .........

alfabeach
alfabeach New Reader
1/21/20 9:50 a.m.

See everybody Friday morning. Weather forecast is looking better every day.

CobraSpdRH
CobraSpdRH Reader
1/21/20 10:51 a.m.

Looks like it might rain before, and be nice during the race for a change.

Those lows in the 40's will make for some fun Floridian camping lol.

Excited to see the Mazdas again this year and see how the new Corvette does!

Devilsolsi
Devilsolsi Reader
1/21/20 12:43 p.m.

One thing that everyone should check out is the historic vehicle display. They will be on track for the Daytona 24 minutes Sat at 10am.

If anyone is looking for the very detailed schedule it can be found here:

https://competitors.imsa.com/sites/default/files/competition/downloads/2020_imsa_official_schedule_and_sr_daytona_24h_011520v1.pdf

 

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
1/24/20 9:44 a.m.

I had to search to figure out what UNOH stood for. Now that I know, I am not any less confused. I'm glad they are sponsoring the Fanzone, but I don't have the foggiest idea why they are. Is there some relation between a college in Ohio I've never heard of and this race?

I wish I was attending the race. I've been to the track, but never the 24. Maybe next year.

humasj
humasj None
1/24/20 11:49 a.m.
T.J. said:

I had to search to figure out what UNOH stood for. Now that I know, I am not any less confused. I'm glad they are sponsoring the Fanzone, but I don't have the foggiest idea why they are. Is there some relation between a college in Ohio I've never heard of and this race?

I wish I was attending the race. I've been to the track, but never the 24. Maybe next year.

UNOH is a college with a strong Automotive Technology program and a long-time presence in motorsports.  They are sponsoring the Fanzone as part of their outreach to inform the public about their programs.  They are likely happy that you asked.

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