Matt Bell Set For Daytona Prototype Debut at New Jersey Motorsports Park Millville, NJ (14 July 2010) - Ever since taking a podium in his rookie season of GRAND-AM competition, Matt Bell has been on a constant upward trajectory and that upward...
Matt Bell Set For Daytona Prototype Debut at New Jersey Motorsports Park
Millville, NJ (14 July 2010) - Ever since taking a podium in his rookie season of GRAND-AM competition, Matt Bell has been on a constant upward trajectory and that upward mobility will take another significant step this weekend as Bell has been signed to race the No. 77 Doran Racing McDonalds, South African Airways, PR Newswire Dallara-Ford at New Jersey Motorsports Park in the Rolex Sports Car Series.
Bell will team with Dion von Moltke for Sunday's 2.75-hour NJMP 250 presented by Crown Royal, which will mark round eight of the 2010 Rolex Series championship. The race will be Bell's first run in the top Daytona Prototype class, and marks the second career Rolex Series outing for the young Californian after debuting with Stevenson Motorsports in the season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona in the GT Class.
Setting record after record in GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge competition helped Bell catch the notice of Doran Racing, one of the most established Daytona Prototype teams, as Bell received the last-minute call up.
His qualifying prowess, also regularly demonstrated this season in Grand Sport as he's been the 'best in class' with the Riley Technologies Chevrolet Camaro fielded by Stevenson Motorsports, will see him strapped into the high-horsepower Roush/Yates-Ford-powered Dallara to secure a spot on the starting grid in qualifying.
"I'm very excited to be getting this chance to race a Daytona Prototype and I have to thank Kevin Doran and Eric Burch for putting this together," said Bell. "I know Dion from racing with him in Continental Tire Challenge and I'm looking forward to having him as my teammate. I know I have a lot to learn with the car, so I just want to take it step by step and have a mistake-free weekend. It's been my dream for a long time to get to race a DP, and I just can't wait for the weekend to get started."
Just as it was at the Daytona 24 weekend, it will be a busy weekend for Bell, who will also be racing on Saturday in the Continental Tire Challenge event, sharing the Stevenson Motorsports Camaro with Jeff Bucknum. The duo, who took a breakthrough podium at VIR before Bell continued to show the speed of the car with the Camaro's first-ever lead laps at Mid-Ohio, will target a return to the GRAND-AM podium again on Saturday.
"The DP and the Camaro are so completely different that I'm not worried about going back and forth between the two--there will be no mistaking what car I am in!" joked Bell as he prepared for the cross-country tour ahead of the race weekend. "I really think we could be on the verge of something very good with the Camaro. I think it is a better car now than what most people give it credit for, because the Stevenson guys just have not stopped pushing the development every weekend. It would be great to be back on the podium Saturday before coming back to race on Sunday!"
"I am really pumped for New Jersey! I could not be more excited than to be driving with Matt Bell. Matt and I have become quite good friends during the racing weekends as we are both managed by P1 Groupe so I have been able to follow his amazing career quite closely. I have no doubt that he will be right up to speed in the PRNewswire/South African Airways/McDonald's Ford Dallara." Dion continues; "After Daytona I said to myself I really need to step it up on all angles and I have been working very hard to do exactly that. I am taking a new approach to my workout regiment including some runs in excess of 3 hours and I could not be physically or mentally in a better place right now so I am looking to get Kevin and everyone at Doran Racing on the podium before seasons end!"