Dallas, Texas - December 18th, 2009 - Godstone Ranch Motorsports and Houston's Texas Heart Institute announced today an impressive driver lineup for the 48th running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The talented group includes some of the biggest...
Dallas, Texas - December 18th, 2009 - Godstone Ranch Motorsports and Houston's Texas Heart Institute announced today an impressive driver lineup for the 48th running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The talented group includes some of the biggest names in American motorsports; Rolex 24 and Le Mans 24 winner Davy Jones, 2008 Rolex Sports Car Series GT Champion Paul Edwards, Daytona 200 5-time winner and AMA Hall of Fame inductee Scott Russell and promising Grand-Am newcomer John McCutchen II will be behind the wheel of the #07 Godstone Ranch Motorsports / Team MBR / LRPG / Corvette, benefitting the Texas Heart Institute.
The quartette will be proudly representing the Texas Heart Institute both on and off the track, gathering the support of the Rolex Sports Car Series community to aid the Institute in its mission to reduce the devastating toll of cardiovascular disease through innovative programs in research, education and improved patient care. For more information on how you can support the Texas Heart Institute please visit www.godstoneranchmotorsports.com.
Godstone Ranch was founded by American sculptor Karen Garrett over 20 years ago through her vision to unite artists of every discipline in one collaborative place. Godstone Ranch Motorsports is an extension of her original vision whose primary aim is to help motor sports contribute to our daily lives and become more than just a sport.
As if the driver lineup wasn't enough to make the group an instant favorite for the Rolex 24 victory, their effort will be strengthened by a championship caliber joint effort between Michael Baughman Racing and Leighton Reese Performance Group who will support and service the team's brand new Victory Red 2010 Corvette C6.R for this race. The grueling 24 hour event will launch Leighton Reese Performance Group's 2010 championship efforts in the #07 car which will be piloted by Paul Edwards and Scott Russell for the rest of the 2010 season.
Davy Jones is one of the most celebrated drivers in American Sports Car history, he has competed with unprecedented success in virtually every form of motorsports including Grand Am, Le Mans Series, IndyCar, Nascar, IMSA-GTP, IROC and Formula 3. Jones returns to the Rolex 24 on the 20th anniversary of his victory at the historic event. The Chicago native is also the last American driver to achieve an overall victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans after his 1996 win, the same year he narrowly missed winning the Indy 500 by the slimmest of margins. A feat bested by only one other driver in history - motor sports legend, A. J. Foyt, who won both of those races in the same year.
In 2008 Paul Edwards led Leighton Reese Performance Group to the Rolex Sports Car Series GT Drivers' Championship, GT Team Championship and GT Manufacturers' Championship. In 2009 Edwards had a strong year as well with a runner-up championship finish and a fourth place at the Rolex 24. The talented American is a constant visitor to Victory Lane and will attempt to add his first Rolex 24 win to his record with Godstone Ranch Motorsports in 2010.
Scott Russell, a.k.a. Mr. Daytona, is best known as the record five-time Daytona 200 winner. He is a former World Superbike and AMA Superbike Champion, and is the all-time leader in 750cc AMA Supersport wins. He was inducted into AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2005. Russell made his four-wheel debut in the 2009 Rolex 24 At Daytona and has since been honing his car racing skills in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series and the Rolex Sports Car Series. He will join LRPG teammate Edwards in 2010 as he competes in his first full four-wheel season.
John McCutchen II reentered racing in 2008 after he and his wife Karen raised their two children, capturing 13 podiums out of 15 starts including 12 wins and two class track records. He is the 2009 SCCA Southwest Division Super Touring Champion finishing fifth in the national points standings. John also placed in the Top 5 in the 2009 NASA Pro German Sports Car Touring GTS4 series points. In 2008, he finished fifth in his debut appearance at the national championship American Road Race of Champions at Road Atlanta. McCutchen currently campaigns a Rolex Grand-Am Corvette C5.R in various national race series and is a frequent test driver and guest instructor at high performance driving events
Davy Jones #07 Texas Heart Institute / GRM / Team MBR / LRPG / Corvette
"I'm excited and thrilled to be part of a championship effort team, I will be going to Daytona with all the surroundings that are necessary to win the race and that's a key. We have a competitive car, a top team and a great driver lineup.
It's hard to believe that it has been 20 years since I won the race, but anniversaries are good! It certainly doesn't feel like it's been so long since my first win there. Racing is something that I've done for 25 years so getting into a car, going back to Daytona, you basically just pick up right where you left off.
To be able to give back is something that I think everybody should do, being a part of the Texas Heart Institute is a great feeling, it all comes together perfectly it feels like one big family. I've lived in Texas, I've raced for AJ Foyt, my daughter lives in Texas, so I'm honored to be given the opportunity to be a part of this project.
I'm really looking forward to driving with Paul, Scott and John, I think the four of us can work together and do what it takes to win the race."
Paul Edwards #07 Texas Heart Institute / GRM / Team MBR / LRPG / Corvette
"It looks like it's going to be a start to a great season. Leighton has built a Corvette which I'm really excited about and so is everybody in the team. The car is going to be very well balanced and fast, I'm looking forward to see how it works for us. It's obviously going to be exciting with the driver lineup that we have, there's some vast experience. Davy Jones obviously has a world of experience he has won Daytona before among many other things, he will definitely bring a lot to the table. I'm really looking forward to driving with him, Scott and John. It will be somewhat my role to try to help these guys learn as much as I can about the car, I've driven it a long time now and I know how it works. It's going to be a little bit different now that it is seven inches shorter and that it has the Corvette body on it but we'll figure it out quickly.
I'm very excited, I've been very close to winning that watch in the past and I feel hungry for it. The Roar Before the 24 will tell us a lot, we'll be working hard as a team to make sure we have the best package possible for the race."
Scott Russell #07 Texas Heart Institute / GRM / Team MBR / LRPG / Corvette
"I couldn't be happier to have an opportunity to drive in the GT Class in the Rolex Sports Car Series, it's a great series, very competitive. I had the opportunity to meet Leighton a couple of times last year and he seems like a really cool guy and he gave me a very warm welcome on the phone the other day so I couldn't be happier, I'm really excited.
The biggest difference between riding a bike and driving a car is the lateral G's, in the motorcycles you can lean into the corners and you are going in head first and in a car it's pushing you out of the way. Sitting inside something has been a big difference as well, in the bikes you have great peripheral and you can look around you. But really nothing has crossed over other than the track knowledge that I have. For a few years I didn't do any competitive racing at all so you really need to get your head back into it and this year was great for that, I will be in much better shape coming into Daytona this time than I was last year."
John McCutchen #07 Texas Heart Institute / GRM / Team MBR / LRPG / Corvette
"We have been working on this project since June. Our main goal was to put together a group of the right people to represent the Texas Heart Institute, and I think our team nailed it. Not only will we be able to introduce the Texas Heart Institute and Godstone Ranch to the racing world, but we will also have a great shot at victory. We are blessed with stellar drivers that I know I will be able to call my friends.
Being together with our group means the world to me. And of course, I can't wait to get out on the track with Davy, Scott and Paul. Everybody wants to drive with the best people, I want to drive with the right people, but the beauty of it is that I get to do both!"
Godstone Motorsports Ranch will be on track for the first time at the Roar Before the 24 on January 8-10. The 48th running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona will take place January 30-31.