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Barrichello, Kanaan sign up for Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona

Rahal himself is not yet slated to race in this year's Daytona 24 Hours, but could still be added to the driver line-up over the coming weeks before the race on January 26. Ryan Briscoe, EJ Viso and Alex Tagliani are also thought possible late pick-ups as teams firm up their Daytona plans. There has also been speculation that two-time CART champion and London 2012 gold medalist Alex Zanardi might be interested in appearing in this year's race.

Andretti Autosport's James Hinchcliffe will be racing in the brand-new GX class, driving for the factory Mazda team in the #70 Mazda6. At one point, it looked possible that all three Andretti IndyCar drivers would be teaming up in a Daytona Prototype, but although series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay is still keen to clinch a ride it's now likely that Marco Andretti will opt to sit out this year's event.

Last year's winner of the Daytona 24 was the #60 Michael Shank Racing car driven by Justin Wilson, AJ Allmendinger, Ozz Negri and John Pew. It marked the first return to competitive racing for Wilson who had missed the latter half of the 2011 IndyCar season after sustaining a serious bank injury in practice at Mid-Ohio in the summer. Wilson is expected to return to the #60 in this year's Daytona event in order to defend his title, along with his team mates and co-drivers.

Also returning to the competition is GP2 driver and 2011 British Formula 3 champion Felipe Nasr. As well as winning last year's Sunoco Daytona Challenge, he was part of the line-up on the second Michael Shank Racing car along with Firestone Indy Lights duo Gustavo Yacaman and Jorge Goncalvez.

It's not yet confirmed whether Nasr will re-team with Yacaman and Goncalvez in the #6 MSR Riley-Ford, but 2012 Firestone Indy Lights champion Tristan Vautier has been announced as one of the drivers behind the wheel of the #00 Mazda/Yellow Dragon Mazda6.

Vautier impressed at the most recent IndyCar winter test at Sebring International Raceway in Florida in December, and may be set to enter IndyCar full-time with Schmidt-Hamilton Motorsport, especially now that Rubens Barrichello is no longer in the running for a full-time race seat in the series. (See separate story.)




Related Pictures

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Justin Wilson celebrates in Victory Lane after the Firestone 550 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, USA. June 9 2012. (c) 2012, Phil Abbott LAT Photo USA (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Rubens Barrichello (#8) during the 2012 IndyCar Indy 500 Rookie Orientation Program at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 10, 2012. (c) 2012 F. Peirce Williams (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Rubens Barrichello with Tony Kanaan at the press conference in Sao Paulo announcing his move to IndyCar for 2012. [Pictire Credit: KV Racing Technology]
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Team Chevy sweeps the podium as Tony Kanaan (center), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Saturday, August 30, 2014, during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Teammate Scott Dixon (left), driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes second, and Ed Carpenter, driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes third. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg EllmanLAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, makes a quick pit stop while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Brian Cleary/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by posing with the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by hoisting the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by kissing the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan with his MAV TV 500 trophy (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and crew celebrate winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday August 30 2014 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan celebrates winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday August 30 2014 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and wife Lauren celebrate winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on Saturday August 30 2014 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and wife Lauren with the Winners Trophy after winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Confetti falls on the podium trio Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan and Ed Carpenter celebrate after the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan and Ed Carpenter celebrate after the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan celebrates winning the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)

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