Aston Martin Fields Strong Line-Up for 2022 Rolex 24 Hours

Aston Martin heads into this weekend’s Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona with its partner teams fielding arguably the strongest ever assault on the US endurance classic by the luxury British sportscar brand. The race will feature four competitive Vantage GT3 line-ups – the most ever – spread across both classes of IMSA’s revamped GTD division, and each will include works Aston Martin Racing drivers in crews capable of challenging for victory.

The Heart of Racing team - Heading to Rolex 24 at Daytona
The Heart of Racing Team

Seattle-based partner team and reigning IMSA Sprint Cup GT champion, the Heart of Racing, returns in 2022 having increased its IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship entry to two cars. One of the team’s four-liter V8 turbo-charged machines carries Aston Martin’s hopes in the new top GTD Pro class for homologated GT3-specification cars, which replaces the outgoing GTLM category for specialized GTE-spec machinery.

While the other will run in the regular GTD class alongside new Aston Martin Racing partner Magnus Racing which has bought a Vantage GT3 for this season. Both teams will be joined in the Rolex 24 by FIA World Endurance Championship regulars, NorthWest AMR, as team owner and driver Paul Dalla Lana (CDN) returns to Daytona with perhaps his best chance yet of tasting glory in the event.

#44 and #98 in qualifying race for Rolex 24 at Daytona
#44 and #98 in qualifying race

The Heart of Racing has retained Sprint Cup champion and AMR works driver Ross Gunn (GBR) to spearhead its GTD Pro attack alongside Alex Riberas (ESP) in 2022. They will be joined for the Rolex 24 by 2020 24 Hours of Le Mans GTE Pro winner Maxime Martin (BEL), who makes his Aston Martin Daytona debut this weekend.

Three-times Le Mans class-winner Darren Turner (GBR) returns to the Heart of Racing in the GTD class car as he aims to add a Daytona podium to his glittering list of honors, alongside the team’s principal Ian James (GBR) and newly crowned AMR Academy winner and team regular Roman De Angelis (CDN). Tom Gamble, no stranger to the Vantage GT3, completes the driver quartet.

The Heart of Racing Team 2
The Heart of Racing Team

NorthWest AMR returns after a season’s sabbatical from Daytona as Dalla Lana brings his new WEC line-up comprising 2019-20 FIA GT world champion Nicki Thiim (DEN) and new AMR works driver (see below) David Pittard (GBR) for a fresh assault on the Rolex 24 in the GTD class. Another works driver and a GTD-class star of the ’21 race, Charlie Eastwood (IRL), completes a strong driver line-up.

#98 North West AMR Aston Martin Vantage
#98 North West AMR Aston Martin Vantage

Finally, the Magnus Racing GTD entry will be manned by US trio and team regulars John Potter, Andy Lally and Spencer Pumpelly, as well as two-time Le Mans class-winner Jonny Adam (GBR), who returns for his first Daytona start since 2014.

Aston Martin Vantage GT4s will also feature heavily in the 4-Hour Michelin Pilot Challenge opener at the same venue on Friday at 1335 ET (-5 Hours GMT). The British luxury sportscar brand goes into the MPC season with four teams entered. Long-time AMR partner Automatic Racing returns for another season with the #09 driven by Ramin Abdolvahabi (USA), Rob Ecklin (USA) and Brandon Kidd (USA).

Maxime Martin
Maxime Martin

The team will run a second #27 car for Paul Kiebler (USA) and Jon Branam (USA). Meanwhile, Alan Brynjolfsson (USA) and Trent Hindman (USA) will embark on a second season with the #7 VOLT Racing with Archangel Vantage GT4. A new team to the AMR family for 2022 is NTE Sport, which will run a Vantage GT4 for American drivers Manny Franco and Romeo Kapudija.

David Pittard
David Pittard

John Gaw, Aston Martin Racing Managing Director, said:

This is Aston Martin’s strongest representation ever for the Rolex 24, and coming off the back of a season with multiple class wins in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, it is a clear signal of intent ahead of an exciting season for Aston Martin Racing and the Vantage, in all its variants.

The 60th Rolex 24 at Daytona will begin at 13:40 ET (-5 Hours GMT), on Saturday, January 29, 2022.

Note: Press release courtesy of Aston Martin Racing.