Series VIR pre-event notes

Out Of The Blocks Strong, Pruett and Rojas Following Road That Led To 2008 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series Daytona Prototype Title New Challengers Look To Gain Ground In Title Chase April 24 At VIR DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Scott ...

Out Of The Blocks Strong, Pruett and Rojas Following Road That Led To 2008 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series Daytona Prototype Title
New Challengers Look To Gain Ground In Title Chase April 24 At VIR

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas have established themselves as the drivers to beat one-quarter of the way through the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16 season.

After three events, the drivers of the No. 01 TELMEX BMW Riley co-owned by Chip Ganassi and Felix Sabates have opened an 11-point lead in the Daytona Prototype points standings. They opened the year with a second-place finish in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, followed by victories at Homestead-Miami Speedway and Barber Motorsports Park.

The situation mirrors the team's championship season in 2008, when Pruett and Rojas won the opening two races at Daytona and Homestead, followed by a second at Mexico City. They continued that momentum by winning four of the next six races to cruise to the championship despite ending the year with back-to-back ninth-place finishes.

When the Rolex Series continues with the Bosch Engineering 250 at Barber Motorsports Park on April 24, Pruett and Rojas are looking to become the first drivers to win three consecutive races since Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty in 2007. A 12th victory would tie Pruett and Rojas with Gurney and Fogarty as the most prolific driving duo in series history. Pruett also looks to break a tie with Terry Borcheller to become the all-time leader in Rolex Series class victories. All but one of Pruett's 25 Rolex Series victories have been at the wheel of a Daytona Prototype.

While Pruett and Rojas are off to a strong start, GAINSCO went out early with an engine failure at Barber and placed 13th. That dropped Fogarty to eighth in the standings, 31 points behind Pruett and Rojas. Perennial powerhouse SunTrust Racing also struggled at the finish at Barber, with Max Angelelli and first-time pole winner Ricky Taylor placing 12th - dropping them to 11th in the standings, 33 points in arrears.

Taking up the chase are a bevy of new contenders, led by Ryan Dalziel, who is second in the standings, 11 points back (102-91). Joining Action Express Racing's winning lineup at Daytona, Dalziel now partners with Mike Forest with Starworks Motorsport, coming off a third-place finish at Barber.

Ozz Negri and John Pew took second at Barber to advance to third in the standings, 21 points behind. They are pressured by Brumos Racing standouts Darren Law and David Donohue (78), AIM Autosport's Burt Frisselle and Mark Wilkins (77); Forest (75); Rolex 24 winners Joao Barbosa and Borcheller (72); Fogarty (71); and Doran Racing's Memo Gidley (71).

Rolex 24 class winners Sylvain Tremblay and Jonathan Bomarito have opened a five-point lead in the Rolex Series GT ranks. The No. 70 SpeedSource Mazda RX-8 drivers are pressured by Stevenson Motorsports Camaro drivers Andrew Davis and Robin Liddell (93-88). Another two points back are SpeedSource No. 69 FXDD Mazda drivers Emil Assentato and Jeff Segal, who were 15th in the Rolex 24 before winning at both Homestead-Miami and Barber.

Turner Motorsport BMW M6 driver Bill Auberlen ranks fourth with 74 points, followed by the two Dempsey Racing Mazda RX-8 tandems. James Gue and defending GT champ Leh Keen have 71 points, one more than racer/actor Patrick Dempsey and Joe Foster.

Practice and qualifying for the fourth round of the season, the Bosch Engineering 250, are set for Friday, April 23. The two-hour, 45-minute race takes the green flag at noon ET Saturday, with flag-to-flag SPEED coverage beginning at 2 p.m.

-source: grand-am

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About this article
Series Grand-Am
Drivers Alex Gurney , Ryan Dalziel , Memo Gidley , Scott Pruett , Robin Liddell , Bill Auberlen , Emil Assentato , Terry Borcheller , Darren Law , David Donohue , Max Angelelli , James Gue , Sylvain Tremblay , Memo Rojas , Andrew Davis , Jonathan Bomarito , Chip Ganassi , Mark Wilkins , Jeff Segal , John Pew , Lehman Keen , Joe Foster , Patrick Dempsey , Felix Sabates , Ricky Taylor , Mike Forest
Teams Turner Motorsport , Stevenson Motorsports , Doran Racing , SpeedSource