Gidley, GAINSCO Team Look For Strong 2013 Start at Rolex 24

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The #99 "Red Dragon" of GAINSCO/Stallings Racing at the 2013 Roar Before the 24 at Daytona. (Photo: Grand Am)
The #99 “Red Dragon” of GAINSCO/Stallings Racing at the 2013 Roar Before the 24 at Daytona. (Photo: Grand Am)

GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing, and drivers Alex Gurney, Jon Fogarty, Memo Gidley and Darren Law, are set to tackle the opening round of the 2013 GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series season in the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Corvette Daytona Prototype at this weekend’s Rolex 24 At Daytona, January 26 – 27. The green flag drops this Saturday, January 26 at 3:30 p.m. EST with live television coverage on SPEED beginning Saturday at 3:00 p.m. EST/12 p.m. PST.

The 2013 Rolex 24 starts the eighth straight season Gurney and Fogarty will co-drive together in the No. 99 GAINSCO “Red Dragon.” They are now the longest-running pair on the grid in terms of consecutive active starts, with 87, after racing together for the first time five races into the 2006 season. They have been teammates ever since.

“Jon and I have built up a lot of mutual trust and respect over the years and the fact that we are still together is evidence that this combination works very well,” Gurney said. “We have similar driving styles and we have definitely honed our craft together and made each other stronger in every way. We are both very hungry to have many more wins and championships!”

Beyond driving together, the two have established a friendship and relationship that spurs them to keep improving, and in turn, has pushed the GAINSCO team forward for the entirety of their time as co-drivers.

“Running 87 races together sounds like a lot, but it does not feel that way,” Fogarty said. “Alex and I have been doing this quite a while, but racing is such a challenge it always feels exciting, and there is always something to learn. Racing never gets old. Alex and I have always had a healthy level of competition with one another, but also a ton of respect and a great friendship. This dynamic works great in sports car racing and I think our results are indicative of this relationship. Another thing we agree on is we need more wins and championships – shared goals!”

The longest streak of consecutive starts for Daytona Prototype drivers is held by Darren Law and David Donohue at 110. In an ironic twist, Law extends his own series-leading start streak by joining the team now closing on that number for this year’s Rolex 24. Daytona marks Law’s first start in the No. 99 GAINSCO/BobStallingsCars.com Corvette.

“It’s a nice stat, but the thing that’s most important to me is to win this race,” Law said. “I’m very grateful and happy to have the opportunity. This is an important race and it’s good to have the extra support. Not only does GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing have a great team and great drivers and a great car, they’ve got great support behind them. It makes us want to work that much harder to win it for them.”

The fourth driver working to deliver GAINSCO’s first Rolex 24 victory is Memo Gidley, back after making his debut with the team in last year’s race.

“I am super pumped for the Rolex 24 at Daytona,” Gidley said. “For a race as important and grueling as Daytona is, the effort, work, and money that everybody puts in makes the reward of a win that much more sweet. I have not won at Daytona before, but I am in the mindset of ‘Why not me?’ this year…or ‘Why not us GAINSCO?’ as a team to win? It would be an unbelievably satisfying experience if I was part of a great winning team like GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing at the Rolex 24. We have a great shot to make this happen.”

The No. 99 GAINSCO/BobStallingsCars.com Corvette is entered in a competitive Daytona Prototype class entry of 17 cars. The team is under no illusions about the magnitude of the task, and is more than up to the challenge.

“The level of each car is over the top this year,” Fogarty said. “The teams have been pushing each other every year and the Daytona Prototype breed has never been stronger. This combined with great drivers stacked in every car will make for a great race.”

GAINSCO’s best Rolex 24 finish was a runner-up placing in 2008 with Jimmie Johnson and Jimmy Vasser joining Gurney and Fogarty in the No. 99. The team returns to a four-driver rotation for the 2013 race for the first time since 2009.

The Rolex 24 at Daytona weekend begins Thursday with opening practice and qualifying. Friday features final practice before Saturday’s race start at 3:30 p.m. local time.

Noteworthy

  •   GAINSCO’s pairing of Gurney and Fogarty is the only full-season Corvette Daytona Prototype driving lineup that stayed unchanged over the offseason. The other three Corvette teams that competed in 2012 made at least one driver change.
  •   With Law’s addition to the GAINSCO car, nine of the 17 Daytona Prototypes entered have at least one driver with an overall Rolex 24 win. “It’s always good to have a lot of cars in this event and it’s great that the numbers are up this year,” Law said. “The driver lineups in all of the cars are of excellent caliber – there are more all-pro cars and there are more cars this year, which is just going to make it all that much tougher to win.”

About GAINSCO Auto Insurance

The primary sponsor of the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Daytona Prototype is GAINSCO Inc., a Dallas, Texas-based auto insurer that distributes policies through a network of thousands of independent agents across Sunbelt states. GAINSCO uses its “Are You Driven?®” motorsports sponsorship and marketing campaign to build brand awareness and advance its distribution strategies. For more information, visit www.GAINSCO.com.

About GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing

GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing has been committed to excellence in road racing since its formation in 2001. The team, lead drivers Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty, and the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Daytona Prototype won the 2007 and 2009 Championships in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, finishing second in the same championships in 2008, and third in 2010 and 2011. The team is supported by GAINSCO Inc., www.BobStallingsCars.com, powered by Chevrolet, and partnered with GM Racing, ECR Engines and Riley Technologies. For more information, visit www.GAINSCORacing.com.