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DATE News (chronologically)
01/09/10
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GRFS Teams With BMW in GRAND-AM Rolex Series in 2010
Three-time GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Cars Series champions Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) announced today that it has partnered with Dinan-BMW as the new manufacturer of its 2010 Daytona Prototype and  its longtime partner TELMEX will once again return as the primary sponsor of  the No.01 with co-drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas.

In addition, the three-time Rolex 24 At Daytona winners (2006, 2007, 2008) will again run a two-car effort for the 49th running of the prestigious Rolex 24 At Daytona, featuring eight drivers representing some of the best talent the motor racing world has to offer. Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas will unite with IZOD IndyCar driver Justin Wilson and American Le Mans Series driver Marino Franchitti to form the lineup in the No. 01 TELMEX/Target Dinan-BMW Riley, while Team Target IndyCar pilots Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti will join Team Target NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Juan Pablo Montoya and Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates teammate Jamie McMurray in the No. 02 Target/TELMEX Dinan-BMW Riley.

NOTES OF INTEREST:

·      CGRFS and TELMEX have the greatest four-race stretch in Rolex 24 At Daytona history with three wins and a second place finish dating back to 2006. The team also has three championships (2004, 2006, 2008) and 23 race wins – all series records, to their credit since their introduction to the circuit in 2004.

·      The 2010 CGRFS driver roster is an impressive group of international racing champions representing three Indianapolis 500 titles (Montoya-2000, Franchitti-2007 and Dixon-2008), five open wheel championships (Montoya-1999, Dixon-2003/2008, and Franchitti-2007/2009), three Daytona Prototype championships (Pruett-2004/2006 and Pruett/Rojas-2007) and five former Rolex 24 winners.

·      Pruett holds the all-time class victory mark at the Rolex 24 At Daytona with eight (2008, 2007, 2002, 1994, 1993, 1992, 1988 and 1987). He has a record 22 overall GRAND-AM Rolex Series wins in addition to three overall wins at the Rolex 24 (2008, 2007 and1994).

·      Chip Ganassi and co-owner Felix Sabates are the only team owners in history to win three-straight Rolex 24 at Daytona events.

·      Pruett and Montoya’s back-to-back wins in 2007-2008 marked the first time drivers earned repeat victories in the race since 1986 and 1987 when Derek Bell, Al Unser, Jr. and Al Holbert accomplished the feat. Montoya became the first driver in Rolex 24 history to win in each of his first two starts in the 24-hour race.

·      Dario Franchitti is the only driver to ever capture the 12 Hours of Sebring, the Indianapolis 500, an open wheel title and the Rolex 24 At Daytona consecutively, accomplishing the feat in less than a year. Mario Andretti and A.J. Foyt are the only others to win the four titles, but neither did so in succession.

·      Pruett became the first two-time GRAND-AM Rolex Series driver champion in 2008 and is the first American to score eight major sports car championships, breaking a record he previously held with the late Peter Gregg. Pruett’s previous titles include a Daytona Prototype championship (2004), two IMSA GTO titles (1986 and 1988), one IMSA GT Endurance (1986) and three Trans-Am championships (1987, 1994 and 2003).

·      Rojas became the first Mexican to win a major driver championship in the United States in 2008 when he and Pruett took the GRAND-AM Rolex Series Daytona Prototype title with six wins.
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·      2010 will be Dinan Engineering’s seventh season (2004-2010) in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Cars Series.

QUOTEBOARD:

Chip Ganassi, Team Owner:

·      “We have been fortunate to have experienced a lot of success in the GRAND-AM series over the last six years. That success stems from a number of factors – like having great drivers behind the wheel, taking great equipment to the track, having great people in the shop and finding great partners. I am pleased to say that once again we will have all of that. Our drivers and the people we have working on the cars are second to none and it is good to partner with TELMEX once again. TELMEX and their brands have been with us from the start and have been integral to our success on the track. But additionally, we are very pleased with our new relationship with Dinan-BMW. They are going to be a great addition to the team.”


Carlos Slim, TELMEX Chairman:

·      “The partnership that we have had with Chip, Felix and their whole organization over the last six years has been nothing short of spectacular. In just six years, we have won three championships and three Rolex 24 At Daytonas. That is hard to top.”


Steve Dinan, Dinan BMW:

·      “Dinan is excited about the 2010 season and our association with Ganassi and BMW. We have always felt the BMW engine is the best suited for the series. It's a great opportunity for Dinan to partner with a three-time series champion capable of winning this year’s championship.”


2010 CGRFS Rolex 24 At Daytona Driver Lineup


SCOTT PRUETT – United States (No.01 TELMEX/Target Dinan-BMW)

- 2008/2007/1994 Rolex 24 At Daytona overall winner

- 2008 GRAND-AM Rolex Series driver and team champion

- 2004 GRAND-AM Rolex Series driver and team champion

MEMO ROJAS – Mexico (No.01 TELMEX/Target Dinan-BMW)

- 2008 Rolex 24 At Daytona overall winner

- 2008 GRAND-AM Rolex Series driver and team champion

- 2003 Skip Barber Dodge Pro Series runner-up

JUSTIN WILSON – England (No.01 TELMEX/Target Dinan-BMW)

- 2006 Rolex 24 At Daytona runner-up

- 2007/2006 Champ Car World Series runner-up

- Six-time IZOD IndyCar Series/Champ Car World Series race winner


MARINO FRANCHITTI –Scotland (No.01 TELMEX/Target Dinan-BMW)

- 2009 American Le Mans Series LMP2 runner-up

- 2008 American Le Mans Series LMP2 fifth-place

- 2001 British GTO champion

SCOTT DIXON – New Zealand (No.02 Target/TELMEX Dinan-BMW)

- 2008/2003 IZOD IndyCar Series champion

- 2008 Indianapolis 500 winner

- 2006 Rolex 24 At Daytona overall winner


DARIO FRANCHITTI – Scotland (No.02 Target/TELMEX Dinan-BMW)

- 2009/2007 IZOD IndyCar Series champion

- 2008 Rolex 24 At Daytona overall winner

- 2007 Indianapolis 500 winner

- 2007 12 Hours of Sebring LMP2 class winner

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA – Colombia (No.02 Target/TELMEX Dinan-BMW)

- 2009 Member of the 2009 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup

- 2008/2007 Rolex 24 At Daytona overall winner

- 2007 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series rookie of the year 

- 2000 Indianapolis 500 winner

JAMIE MCMURRAY – United States (No.02 Target/TELMEX Dinan-BMW)

- Three-Time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winner

- 2005 Rolex 24 At Daytona fourth-place finish

- 2003 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year

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