The Rolex Bob Snodgrass Award of Excellence was created to recognize the team owner or team manager who has demonstrated the qualities of integrity, passion for the sport, and love of cars for which Bob Snodgrass was known during his life and career. The award, supported by Gorsline Company, the premier insurer of high-risk professionals, has been presented previously to Bob Stallings (2010), Joe Sahlen (2011), Peter Baron (2012) and John Stevenson (2013).
Backgrounds on candidates for the 2014 Rolex Bob Snodgrass Award of Excellence follow:
Jon Bennett, CORE autosport
Jon Bennett founded Composite Resources in 1995 as a means to fund his racing ambitions. With his guidance, the design and manufacturing company flourished, allowing Bennett to pursue his professional racing aspirations in IMSA Prototype Lites, where he was the highest ranked rookie in 2010. That same year, Bennett made the jump to team owner with the creation of CORE autosport. In its first season of Prototype Challenge competition, CORE earned the PC team championship and proceeded to collect the same trophy the following three seasons. The team's success caught the attention of Porsche, which named CORE its competition partner for a two-car GTLM program. This resulted in the 2014 Manufacturers' Championship for Porsche.
The 2014 season also saw Bennett earn his first professional Driver's Championship in PC. CORE continues its partnership with Porsche in 2015 and its quest for PC Championship number five.
Alex Job, Alex Job Racing
Alex Job has retired twice from race car driving, once in the late 1970s and again in '92 when he concluded that Alex Job Racing (AJR), which he founded in 1988, would be better served if he focused on being the team's manager and engine builder. By then, he had secured second-place finishes at the Rolex 24 At Daytona (1990) and the 12 Hours of Sebring (1991).
His second retirement began paying off in 1995 when AJR started turning in what would become a long string of victories highlighted by two GT class wins at the Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona (1999, 2013) as well as 48 pole positions and 106 podium finishes. AJR jumped into the inaugural season of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) in 1999 full-bore with a two-car effort. Starting strong, it captured GT class honors in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, then built upon this success to win other major North American endurance events, including the 12 Hours of Sebring and the Petit Le Mans.
AJR has continued its success in the ALMS with numerous podium placements, wins and track records, and in 2014 it competed with WeatherTech Racing Porsche and Team Seattle-Heart of Racing Porsche in GTD Class for the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
Will Turner, Turner Motorsport
Since founding Turner Motorsport in 1993, Owner Will Turner has seen much success both on the track and in the business world. Since 1998, Turner himself has raced in 160 professional races with BMW, claiming 26 class victories and the 2006 Grand-AM Cup Driver's Championship. That same year, Turner was recognized by BMW Motorsport as the third most successful BMW racer in the world. Turner has been the driving force behind Turner Motorsport's 302 professional races with BMW, second only in the world to Team Schnitzer. Turner's race team has captured seven professional racing championships in the last 11 years, including this year's historic Team and Driver's Championships with the No. 94 Z4 GTD in the inaugural season of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
Most recently Turner and two of his drivers, Dane Cameron and Markus Palttala, were once again honored during the BMW Sport Trophy Awards. Following a remarkable 2014 season that saw four overall class victories and two titles, Palttala and Cameron were recognized as the two most successful BMW racers in the world for 2014.
About Bob Snodgrass – Snodgrass, who passed away in 2007 at the age of 64, was president of Brumos Racing and president and CEO of the Brumos auto dealerships in Jacksonville, Fla., where he lived for 35 years. As a team owner he had three Rolex 24 At Daytona wins (Brumos Racing has eight) and a total of 10 wins at Daytona. He was a driving force behind the formation of the Grand American Road Racing Association and the Daytona Prototype class. Born in Elmira, N.Y., he saw his first race at Watkins Glen, N.Y., and was hooked. Famous for his humor and wit and an accomplished vintage car racer, Snodgrass (along with Peter Gregg, who owned Brumos Porsche from 1965 until his death in 1980) was instrumental in Brumos' entry into motor sports.