Ricky Rudd has accepted an invitation to race in the twenty-fifth anniversary edition of the True Value International Race of Champions (IROC) Series in 2001.

Rudd, driver of the No. 28 Texaco/Havoline NASCAR Winston Cup Series Ford, will enter the competition looking for his second victory, having been crowned champion in 1992.

"I really enjoyed the IROC Series in the years I raced in it," Rudd said. "It gives me another chance to race, but also a chance to compete against drivers from other series. The 1992 championship is something I have always been very proud of, and it's a real honour to be part of the 2001 True Value IROC Series."

Rudd was an IROC contender in 1992, 1993 and 1995. In the 12 races he competed in, Rudd finished in the top-five eight times. He also has the distinction of finishing in the only tie in IROC history - for second place with Harry Gant in the 1992 Daytona race.

The True Value IROC began in 1973 with a simple premise: Take 12 of the world's top drivers from different forms of Motorsports, put them in identically prepared cars, give them a set of rules which virtually eliminates variables usually associated with Motorsports (pit stops, qualifying, control over setups), and wave the green flag at them.

Rudd is part of an impressive list of IROC champions which includes: Mario Andretti, A.J. Foyt, Al Unser, Mark Donahue, Davey Allison, Bobby Allison, Cale Yarborough, Dale Earnhardt and Mark Martin.

The four-race schedule includes races at Daytona International Speedway (Feb. 16), Talladega Superspeedway (April 21), Michigan International Speedway (June 9) and Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Aug. 4).