Daytona II: Lexus preview

LEXUS LOOKS TO CONTINUE MOMENTUM INTO SECOND HALF -- With four victories in the season's first seven races, Lexus enjoys a three-point lead in the Rolex Sports Car Series Manufacturer's Championship heading into the second half of the 2008...

LEXUS LOOKS TO CONTINUE MOMENTUM INTO SECOND HALF -- With four victories in the season's first seven races, Lexus enjoys a three-point lead in the Rolex Sports Car Series Manufacturer's Championship heading into the second half of the 2008 campaign at Daytona this Thursday. The Chip Ganassi Racing #01 Telmex Lexus has earned each of the four wins, as well as a second and a third-place finish.

In addition to pursuing its second manufacturer's title in three years, Lexus drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas currently have a 37-point advantage in the driver's championship, while Chip Ganassi Racing maintains a similar point lead in the team championship. Since entering Daytona Prototype competition in 2004, Lexus has powered four championship runs -- the 2004 driver's championship for Pruett and Max Papis, the 2004 and 2006 team titles for Chip Ganassi Racing and the 2006 manufacturer's championship.

LEXUS AT DAYTONA -- The Daytona International Speedway is 2,516 miles from Lexus' North American headquarters in Torrance, Calif., but based on past results, it just might be the luxury automaker's home track. This past January, Lexus became the first manufacturer in 20 years to win three consecutive Rolex 24 at Daytona races -- a feat not seen since Al Holbert's Porsches registered a similar feat from 1986-1988. In addition to the three victories, Lexus-powered prototypes also have earned a pair of seconds, a third and two fourths at "the World Center of Racing."

RECORD-SETTERS -- Long-time Lexus driver Scott Pruett began his record-breaking season with a record seventh "Rolex 24 at Daytona" victory and with each of his 2008 triumphs, he's established a new standard for Rolex Series wins with 18. Pruett also holds a 37-point lead in an attempt to win a record eighth major U.S. sports car championship. On the team side, Chip Ganassi Racing has extended its win total to 19 -- also a Rolex Series record.

As fast as the Ganassi team has proven to be in winner's circle, the team has been just as consistent. The #01 Lexus driven by Pruett and teammate Memo Rojas is currently in the midst of another series record, this one for consecutive top-10 finishes. The team has logged 26 straight top-10 finishes in a streak that dates back more than two years. During that stretch, the #01 has scored eight victories, 17 top-threes and 21 top-five finishes.

TRD ON A DAYTONA ROLL -- TRD, U.S.A., (Toyota Racing Development), which prepares the Lexus engines for Grand-Am competition, has enjoyed a dream season to date at Daytona. The company's designed and developed engines have already won four races in Daytona this season beginning with the Rolex 24 (Scott Pruett/Memo Rojas/Juan Montoya/Dario Franchitti), followed by victories in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (Todd Bodine), NASCAR Nationwide Series (Tony Stewart) and in a NASCAR Sprint Cup Gatorade Duel (Denny Hamlin).

-credit; Lexus/Toyota Motorsports

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Tony Stewart , Todd Bodine , Max Papis , Scott Pruett , Al Holbert , Memo Rojas , Chip Ganassi , Denny Hamlin
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Toyota Racing