DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Britain’s Vic Elford, one of the most versatile drivers in racing history and winner of the 1968 Rolex 24 At Daytona, will serve as Grand Marshal for the 48th anniversary of the Rolex 24 At Daytona on Jan. 30-31, the kickoff event to the Speedweeks 2010 and the season opener for the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16, Daytona International Speedway President Robin Braig announced.
Elford will give the command, “Drivers, start your engines” for America’s twice-around-the-clock challenge and the kick-off event to the international motorsports calendar.
Behind the wheel of a Porsche 907, Elford, along with Germans Jochen Neerpasch and Rolf Stommelen and Switzerland’s Jo Siffert, won the 1968 Rolex 24 overall title, which was the first of Porsche’s record 21 overall Rolex 24 victories.
Elford, nicknamed “Quick Vic,” was an established rally driver winning the prestigious Monte Carlo Rally as well as the European Rally Championship. In addition to rallying and sports car racing, where he notched victories as Nurburgring and Targa Florio, Elford also competed in Formula One and NASCAR.
“Vic Elford has a long list of motorsports accomplishments and we’re honored that he will serve as Grand Marshal for the 2010 Rolex 24 At Daytona,” Braig said. “The Rolex 24 showcases the world’s greatest drivers from different driving disciplines taking on the ultimate test of driver and machine. With his diverse motorsports background, it’s only fitting to have a racing legend such as Vic Elford give the starting command and take part in all the other festivities that come with the Rolex 24.”
Elford will join a long list of racing legends who have served as Grand Marshal for the Rolex 24 At Daytona. Past Rolex 24 Grand Marshals include Brian Redman, Dan Gurney, Jackie Stewart, Richard Petty, Derek Bell, Bobby Rahal and Sir Stirling Moss.
The No. 58 Brumos Porsche Riley with drivers David Donohue, Darren Law, Antonio Garcia and Buddy Rice captured the 2009 Rolex 24 in the closest finish in event history over the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Lexus Riley.
The Rolex 24 is America’s most prestigious sports car event and one of only two 24-hour sports car events in the world. The twice-around-the-clock challenge attracts a star-studded driver lineup from all racing disciplines around the world.
Drivers who competed in the 2009 edition of the Rolex 24 included NASCAR stars Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch and Juan Pablo Montoya, IndyCar stars Dario Franchitti, Ryan Briscoe, Scott Dixon, Buddy Rice and Danica Patrick and sports car veterans Max Angelelli, Hurley Haywood, Scott Pruett, Jon Fogarty and Alex Gurney.
The event also produces a festival atmosphere with plenty of activities for fans to experience such as a massive driver autograph session, wine and cheese tasting, Chili Cook-Off, the Daytona 5K run/walk and Uncle Robbie’s Breakfast Garage.
Tickets for the Rolex 24 At Daytona are on sale along with the rest of Speedweeks events including the 52nd annual Daytona 500. To purchase tickets, go online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by call 1-800-PITSHOP. Stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter (www.twitter.com/disupdates) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/DaytonaInternationalSpeedway)