Button logs laps in NASCAR Garage 56 entry


Jenson Button has completed his first laps in the NASCAR Garage 56 entry as he prepares to compete in this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans. Picture: NASCARG56 Twitter

Jenson Button has completed his first laps in the NASCAR Garage 56 entry as he prepares to compete in this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Button turned laps in the Hendrick Motorsports-supported Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 test car at Daytona International Speedway as part of his preparations for the 91st running of the race on June 10-11 – where he will share driving duties with seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson and 2010 Le Mans winner Mike Rockenfeller.

The shakedown marked the 2009 Formula 1 World Drivers’ Champion’s first laps at Daytona.

“For me, I’ve only done 20 laps, so it’s very difficult for me to talk about where the car is – but for me, it’s getting used to the position in the car,” the 43-year-old said.

“Obviously, there is body roll, it feels like it oversteers, but it’s not oversteering; it’s actually just the car itself taking a set.

“So the car runs like in the Cup Series, it runs very low at the rear, so on the banking, it’s like sitting on the ground. So it’s a lot to learn, but it’s a race car. And I can work with a race car.”

The Brit is embracing the challenges of the Garage 56 project and the opportunity to compete with Johnson and Rockenfeller.

“When I finished my F1 career, I looked for new challenges and this is definitely an exciting challenge,” the 15-time Formula 1 Grand Prix winner added.

“To work alongside these two drivers – as you can see already, there is some good banter.

“I think it just shows that teamwork we will need to go to Le Mans and perform as we would like.

“I’m very excited to work with this all-star team and I think we can achieve something very special.”

Johnson, who also turned laps at the shakedown, praised the reliability of the ZL1 test vehicle.

“From my standpoint, I don’t have really any concerns for the car from a durability point of view,” said Johnson, who will complete a partial NASCAR Cup Series campaign in 2023 with the Legacy Motor Club.

“I think it’s going to be great for Hendrick and a lot of the folks that are here that have not worked through live pit stops and trying to keep the car running like you do an endurance race.

“I think that for me, I’m more excited about that, so the whole group understands that aspect because there’s a lot of new faces and a lot of first-timers to an endurance race.”

Following the shakedown, the NASCAR Garage 56 squad is set to undertake an endurance test at Daytona International Speedway on Wednesday, February 1 local time.

Join the discussion below in the Speedcafe.com comments section

Please note: Speedcafe.com reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]