GANASSI/LEXUS DUO CONCLUDE SUCCESSFUL THREE-DAY "ROAR BEFORE THE 24" JDAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 5, 2009) -- In preparation for a run at a record-extending fourth consecutive Rolex 24 at Daytona victory, the Lexus-powered Chip Ganassi Racing team...
GANASSI/LEXUS DUO CONCLUDE SUCCESSFUL THREE-DAY "ROAR BEFORE THE 24"
JDAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 5, 2009) -- In preparation for a run at a record-extending fourth consecutive Rolex 24 at Daytona victory, the Lexus-powered Chip Ganassi Racing team completed a successful three-day test at the "Roar Before the 24" at the Daytona International Speedway on Monday.
A pair of Ganassi entries each ran more than 850 miles over the eight practice sessions without a single mechanical or performance issue, and each of the Lexus-Rileys finished on the top of the time charts in one of the Daytona Prototype sessions.
Scott Pruett registered the fastest time in the afternoon session on Saturday in the two-time defending champion #01 Lexus, while Scott Dixon topped the charts on Sunday afternoon in the #02 Lexus.
Pruett will be joined by Juan Montoya and full-time teammate Memo Rojas in the #01. Pruett and Montoya will both be looking for their third consecutive Rolex 24 overall victories, while Rojas will be looking for his second.
The #02 will feature the last two Indianapolis 500 winners in Dixon and Dario Franchitti, who will move over to the car after driving in the #01 with Pruett, Montoya and Rojas a year ago. Dixon drove the #02 Lexus to victory in 2006 and also won the 2003 Indy Racing League championship with Toyota power. They will be joined by 2007 Indy Lights champion Alex Lloyd.
Overall, five of the six Lexus-powered drivers have previously won the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
Last season at Daytona, Lexus became the first manufacturer to win three consecutive Rolex 24 races in more than 20 years when Pruett, Rojas, Montoya and Franchitti combined for a two-lap victory. The dominating win was indicative of Lexus' endurance excellence as the car led the final 101 laps and three hours and 19 minutes. Overall, the team led 252 laps, while Lexus-powered cars were in front for 286 of the 695 circuits. Over the manufacturer's spectacular three-year Daytona run, Lexus-powered cars have led 1,257 laps -- more than 60 percent of the laps run at Daytona during that span.