David Donohue has praised the Brumos Racing team for its stunning win in the Rolex 24 at Daytona, after he fended off the challenge of Juan Pablo Montoya to give the team its first win in the event since 1978.
Donohue was given the job of taking the run to the flag after a dramatic race that saw four cars finish within ten seconds of each other after the annual race around the clock.
It capped the perfect start to the year for the Brumos squad as Donohue battled his way past Juan Pablo Montoya in the final hour and then held off the challenge of Juan Pablo Montoya to secure honours by less than two-tenths of a second.
“I don't really know what to say,” he said following the race. “I'm so proud of our guys and what might get lost in the stories is that as a team, we finished first and third. That speaks volumes for the preparation we have done and the people we have involved in all this.
“We hadn't touched the cars since we rolled off the trucks apart from a bit of a gear change so we did our homework, came here to win and executed it just like Buddy Rice said [in the press conference].
“The pace of the race was flat out from the drop of the green flag and you always talk of this event as a 24 hour sprint race. That is said tongue in cheek as that's how it begins but rarely how it finished. But this was flat freaking out to the end!”
Donohue's win came 40 years after father Mark took victory for Penske back in 1969 but he said he was keen to now make his own history.
“I think it'll sink in over time,” he said. “I'm more proud of my team and this effort. It's coincidental that it is 40 years from his overall win and it's nice, but I like to make my own history. I'd like it to start now with a heavy bunch of wins and championships to be honest with you.”
Team-mate Darren Law was also delighted with the victory, although he admitted that he hadn't been able to watch the final laps as Donohue held off Montoya by just 0.167secs to secure the win.
“Buddy, myself and Antonio stood behind the tent as we couldn't watch,” he said. “It was nerve wracking.
“You know, it's a long season and who knows what will happen. At least we start the season leading the points and if you look at the teams who have won the championship in the past, you have to do well at Daytona. So this is a good start for us.”