TRG to Field Five Potent Porsche Entries for Rolex 24; Team is looking for third Rolex 24 win
Petaluma, CA- When the TRG armada of transporters unloads for the Grand-Am Rolex Series Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona, the numbers will be trumped by quality and speed. TRG will field five cars for the twice around the clock race on January 24-25 with the hope and expectation of bringing home their third Rolex 24 Hour GT win.
Piloting the five Porsche 997 TRG GT class sports cars will be a who's who of the top sports car drivers from around the globe. With drivers from five different countries emerging on the World Center of Racing with a single goal of returning to their homeland with a shiny Rolex Daytona wrist watch.
The No. 63 TRG/Guardian Angel Motorsports (GAM) entry includes an all east coast driver lineup that will be racing for a children's charity. The team consisting of Bruce Ledoux, David Quinlan, Dan Watkins, Steve Zadig and Kurt Kossman has taken on the added challenge of gathering donations on a per lap or lump sum basis to aid Children's Hospital Boston and their comprehensive center for pediatric health care. The GAM web site, www.guardianangelmotorsports.com, is in place to take donations and explain the basics of this worthy cause.
The No. 65 Riegel-Stanton Porsche will be driven by John Potter, Craig Stanton, Bryce Miller and Marco Holzer. After a stellar performance in 2008, Potter returns to TRG in 2009 and will partner Grand-Am series veteran and 2005 GT series champion Stanton. Multiple GT series race winner Bryce Miller will add outright speed and consistency to the lineup while young gun Porsche Factory Driver Marco Holzer brings youth and a lot of Porsche miles behind the wheel of a 997. The team will also be turning laps for a worthy charity, flying the colors for the "65 Roses Sports Club," a division of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The team will be giving several behind the scenes tours and VIP experiences for charitable donations. For more information be sure to check out www.65rosesracing.com.
In the historic No. 66 AXA Insurance/Mitchell Rubber TRG Porsche Ted Ballou, Tim George Jr., Spencer Pumpelly, Emmanuel Collard and Richard Lietz will be a team to be reckoned with at the 24. Ballou and Pumpelly drove most of the 2008 season together. George Jr. is the reigning GT series winner of the Akin and MESCO rookie awards. Collard is a Porsche Factory Driver with a world class endurance pedigree. Richard Lietz, also a top factory driver, will help to round out this potent lineup of experienced road racers.
The No. 67 Construct Corps/ CRG/ No Fear Energy Drinks/ K1 Speed/ Gemstone Winery TRG Porsche will see Justin Marks teamed with RJ Valentine, Andy Lally, Patrick Long and Joerg Bergmeister. This quintet should be a threat to top the charts in practice, qualifying and at 3:30 p.m. on January 25th. Lally and Marks most recently banged wheels in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and will be teammates for the full 2009 GT season. Marks drove in sports cars as a Factory BMW driver for three years prior to his foray into truck racing. RJ Valentine last teamed with Andy Lally in 2007, winning five races together. Long is a Porsche Factory Driver and a Rolex Series race winner in both GT and Daytona Prototype (DP) cars. Bergmeister, also a factory driver, is the 2006 Rolex Series DP champion as well as winning two Daytona 24 hour races with TRG team owner Kevin Buckler as his co-driver.
The No. 68 James Farrell & Co./ Pallis Properties, Inc./ COLO Columbia River Logistics/ TRG Porsche will feature Josemanuel Gutierrez, Steve Miller and Chris Pallis all bringing a healthy level of speed and experience to the effort. For Gutierrez it will be his first 24 as he continues his steady ascension through the professional racing ranks. For Miller and Pallis they have been there multiple times before and will be looking for a top finish.
"We have five Porsches that feature very strong driver lineups," Kevin Buckler, TRG team owner said. "We have five Porsche Factory Drivers sprinkled in the cars. That helps with experience, speed, setup as well as having been through the rigors of racing in a 24 hour event. We have the Guardian Angels Motorsports guys who will be making sure they turn more laps than any other car to raise as much money as they can for Boston Children's Hospital. The 66 is driven by drivers who have all raced with us in the past. Justin, RJ and Andy in the 67 car have to be one of the odds on favorites for the race win. The 68 car has a lot of experience and speed. The 65 Riegel-Stanton team is back with us. John Potter and Craig Stanton will be racing together for the season. The duo also have very strong co-drivers for the 24 and we are happy to be helping out the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. It is an exciting time going into Daytona. We won the GT race in 2002, won the 24 hour overall in 2003 to go along with seven total podium finishes at this historic race. The team is focused on preparation and we are looking forward to going for our third Rolex win at the end of next month. No doubt, this is a big task and there are a lot of strong teams, but we will be ready."
The TRG fleet will take to the track January 3-5 for the traditional Roar Before the Rolex 24 test days. The Rolex 24 At Daytona will see a three-hour later start than last year with teams taking the green flag at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 24 with the checkered flag waving 24 hours later on January 25.