The start of the new Formula 1 season may be eight weeks away, but one of its biggest recent names will be hitting the track in anger for the first time this week in the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Fernando Alonso made his debut in the race last year to gain experience ahead of his victorious maiden outing at Le Mans, but is back once again in his first race since quitting F1.

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This time around, Alonso will be gunning for overall victory as part of a stacked line-up at Wayne Taylor Racing, one of the leading outfits in the IMSA series.

Alonso will be joined in the field by a number of motorsport’s biggest stars, including 51 previous Rolex 24 class winners, 40 IMSA champions, 33 Le Mans class winners, five IndyCar champions – and even a few names from F1’s recent history.

Are you a sports car rookie keen to learn more about the Rolex 24? Or an F1 fanatic looking to learn the basics so you can follow Alonso’s progress?

We have everything you need right here with our rookie’s guide to the Rolex 24 at Daytona.