Buddy Rice thought he was in select company by having his image on the Borg-Warner Trophy, but moved further among the elite by adding Daytona 24 Hours success to his win in the Indianapolis 500.
Rice teamed up with David Donohue, Darren Law and Antonio Garcia to win the 47th Rolex 24 at Daytona for Brumos Racing on Sunday.
After Donohue took pole ahead of the weekend, the quartet overcame a night-time shunt for Garcia to bounce back and claim the team's first Grand-Am series victory since 2003, and deny TELMEX/Target Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates a fourth consecutive triumph in the event.
"To think my face is on the Borg-Warner trophy, that was an elite group," Rice admitted, "But now to also have all the people who have won the 24 Hours at Daytona, and also for me to be able to do both, it's unbelievable."
The 2004 Indianapolis 500 winner joined double winners Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon, Juan Pablo Montoya, Arie Luyendyk, Al Unser Jr, Al Unser, AJ Foyt, Bobby Rahal, Dan Wheldon, Mario Andretti and Mark Donohue with his success on Sunday, while the Donohues became the third father-son combination to win the 24-hour event overall, joining Al Unser and Al Unser Jr and John Paul and John Paul Jr. Mark Donohue won the 1969 race in a Lola-Chevrolet T70, joined by Chuck Parsons, for Penske Racing.
The victory was gratifying to Rice, who has competed at Daytona with Brumos Racing the past four years.
"We had a self-inflicted wound two years ago, when we had a car that was capable of winning," he reflected, "Last year, we had a bit of a mechanical issue.
"So it's not like a big shock that we're running up front but, this year, we made sure we had all of the Is dotted and the Ts crossed and came here and executed. That's what Penske does. That's what Ganassi and Wayne Taylor does. They're guys that win races. They execute."
David Donohue, who passed Juan Pablo Montoya with 39 minutes remaining and held off multiple late charges, echoed Rice's thoughts.
"These guys have put a lot of effort into this," he said, "I'm glad to be able to carry the flag. The Brumos team is just a tenacious bunch of guys. We came here ready to run and we ran hard the whole time."