A three-month break for the Grand-Am Rolex Series comes to an end this weekend with the Bosch Engineering 250 at Virginia International Raceway.
Brumos Racing captured Daytona Prototype honours in round one of the 2009 campaign, with David Donohue and Darren Law - joined by guest drivers Antonio Garcia and Buddy Rice - winning the Rolex 24 At Daytona by 0.167-seconds, the closest finish in the 47-year history of the event.
"As my dad would say, the parking meter goes back to zero at midnight," said Donohue, whose father - the late Mark Donohue - won the 1969 edition of the Daytona endurance classic. "It's back to square one. Our guys have been working very hard for seven seasons now; there's no letting up in this business. We'll do the best we can at VIR. We're at the point where we know what to expect when we show up at a race track - especially one we've been to before."
Brumos Racing returns a solid two-car effort to VIR, with Joao Barbosa and JC France co-driving the team's flagship #59 Porsche Riley. The pair were joined by Terry Borcheller and American legend Hurley Haywood in finishing third in the Rolex 24.
TELMEX Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates is the defending winner of the Bosch Engineering 250, with Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas returning to the #01 Lexus Riley. They are also the 2009 Daytona Prototype co-champions and lead the point standings, due to a post-inspection penalty to the winning car following the Rolex 24. Joined by Juan Pablo Montoya, Pruett and Rojas finished second in January's season opener.
"Virginia is one of my favorite tracks," Rojas said. "It is a true driver's track, full of challenging corners and elevation changes, so I really, really enjoy driving there. I know we have a good car there, and we are able to have a good set up where I know we can be quick."
Last year, Rojas and Pruett won the Bosch Engineering 250 despite very trying circumstances. It was their third victory in four races, after winning the Rolex 24 at Daytona and at Homestead-Miami Speedway in addition to finishing second at Mexico City. Pruett held off Ryan Dalziel by 0.548 seconds, continuing the trend in close finishes in Rolex Series races.
"We got the pole at Virginia last year, but unfortunately we were disqualified from qualifying for a penalty in the technical inspection," said Rojas, who started 18th. "We started the race from the pit lane, actually, because the team did not want to risk an accident at the start. We ended up winning, and it was really one of the best races we had all season - starting from dead last and battling all the way to the front - thanks to an awesome drive by Scott and myself, and also great strategy by the team."
The Brumos and Ganassi teams face strong challenges by the remainder of 17-car Daytona Prototype field, with Michael Shank Racing, Krohn Racing, GAINSCO Bob Stallings Racing, SunTrust Racing, Doran Racing, Penske Racing, Spirit of Daytona Racing, Childress-Howard Motorsports, Orbit Racing, AIM Autosport, Supercar Life Racing and Beyer Racing also filing entries.