The TUDOR United SportsCar Championship make its debut in grand style, taking the green flag at the 52nd running of the iconic Rolex 24 of Daytona Jan. 25-26, with the FOX Sports family of networks delivering 15 hours of live coverage, beginning Saturday, Jan. 25 at 2 PM ET on FOX.
Bob Varsha once again leads a broadcast booth that includes Calvin Fish, Dorsey Schroeder, Brian Till, Tommy Kendall and Justin Bell. Chris Neville, Jamie Howe, Andrew Marriott and Matt Yocum report from the pits.
“There’s lots of reasons why the atmosphere in the garage at the Rolex 24 at Daytona is unlike any other race, and the stellar driver lineup is first among them,” Varsha said. “To be honest, we try hard on the television side to make sure the full-season drivers don’t feel they’re being ignored when Daytona becomes the racing version of a red carpet premiere. But we probably shouldn’t worry, because the series regulars naturally want to race against the best competition, and the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship has made it easier than ever to bring together that pool of driving talent from around the world. It’s fun to watch the drivers interact at the track, knowing that each has just one goal in mind, and that is winning a Rolex.”
Second-day coverage of the twice-around-the-clock event begins Sunday, Jan. 26 at 7 AM ET on FOX Sports 1 and runs through the conclusion at Daytona International Speedway.
Overnight coverage from the event is live-streamed on FOX Sports GO from Jan. 25 at 9 PM ET to Jan. 26 at 7 AM ET, with live on-board coverage from multiple vehicles streaming throughout the event on SPEED: the Motors on FOX Blog.
Schroeder, whose decades-long racing résumé includes time behind the wheel in Trans Am, IMSA, IROC, ALMS and the famed 24 Hours of Le Mans, believes the learning curve will be steep in this inaugural event under the new format.
“Keep an eye on the new breed of Pro-Sportscar racers and how they learn to deal with other cars that achieve lap times by being fast on different areas of the race track,” Schroeder said. “It will take time to adjust to new rules and enforcement … learning to race with one another, without hindering one another.”
Under the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship banner, the race features four different classes on track simultaneously:
- The lead Prototype (P) class, combining the Rolex Series’ GRAND-AM’s Daytona Prototypes plus the ALMS’ P2 and DeltaWing cars
- Prototype Challenge (PC), retained from the current ALMS class structure
- GT Le Mans (GTLM), consisting of the ALMS’ current GT class
- GT Daytona (GTD), consisting of the Rolex Series’ current GT and GX classes and the ALMS’ current GTC class
Broadcast schedule (All times Eastern and subject to change):
- Saturday, Jan. 25 – FOX (2 PM to 4 PM, LIVE)
- Saturday, Jan. 25 – FOX Sports 2 (4 PM to 9 PM, LIVE)
- Saturday/Sunday, Jan. 25-26 – FOX Sports GO (9 PM to 7 AM)
- Sunday, Jan. 26 – FOX Sports 1 (7 AM to 3 PM)
In addition to streaming on-board coverage, SPEED: the Motors on FOX Blog covers the event all week with hourly race blog updates, photo galleries, fast-turn video and active social media participation.
The IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge also launches its 2014 campaign at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Jan. 24. FOX Sports 2 will have same-day television coverage of the season opener at 6 p.m. ET.FOX, FOX Sports 1, FOX Sports 2, Sports Cars