Bobby Labonte (LAT photo)
One of the benefits of racing for The Racer's Group in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is also getting to drive for the team in the Rolex 24. Former Sprint Cup champion Bobby Labonte will join the defending GT winning No. 67 TRG Porsche GT3 at the Rolex 24, co-driving with Andy Lally, Spencer Pumpelly and Tim George Jr.
"Kevin [Buckler, team owner] really didn't have to talk me into it," Labonte said. "I've always been a big fan of the Rolex 24 since I started racing, and I raced a kart on the same track back when I was 15. He didn't have to twist my arm. It was just a case of, ‘Show up Tuesday and we'll go race.' I've watched the TRG Porsches in Grand-Am races while sitting on pit road as a fan when the Rolex Series runs with NASCAR Sprint Cup, watching to see how the team did things."
The Jan. 30-31 race will be Labonte's fourth Rolex 24 but first in the GT class. He doesn't think the change will make that much difference. "It's just like driving the Daytona Prototype the three years that I raced it here," Labonte said. "It's road course racing, which we don't get to do a lot of in NASCAR, and the cars are getting stiffer and have less movement under braking and acceleration. These cars don't move around as much as our NASCAR cars do."