Rough Day at the Rolex for Wardy, Russell and Pridmore

Larry Lawrence | January 25, 2009

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 25, 2009) – Motorcycle racing stars Jeff Ward, Scott Russell and Jason Pridmore, along with their established sports car ace teammate Guy Cosmo, took 11th in the Daytona Prototype class (23rd overall out of 52 starters) Sunday in the 47th Rolex 24 At Daytona. The team, driving the No. 09 Spirit of Daytona Racing/Boy Scouts of America Porsche Coyote rebounded from two spins and a pit fire to complete the prestigious auto race. “It wasn’t pretty, but we finished,” said a worn looking Ward after the race. “We had all kinds of problems, from car setup, to the fire. The seat wasn’t adjusted right for me and my leg was moving around under the G forces and I pulled some muscles and started cramping badly. It was a tough outing for sure.” Russell, the five-time Daytona 200 winner, was amazed at the Spirit of Daytona crew. He was sitting in the car ready to turn a stint with about three hours to go when the car burst into flames – a result of a broken gas pump brace. Russell got out unscathed, but looked shaken after the ordeal. “I was just about to strap in when it happened,” Russell said. “I smelled gas and all of a sudden they’re pulling me out of the car. I thought the thing was toast. I didn’t think there was any way we could get back on the track, but before I knew it the crew was telling me to suit up. It’s amazing they got the thing going after that kind of fire. I’ve got to hand it to them, they were a hard-working crew.” Spirit of Daytona finished with 649 laps. The winning Brumos Porsche completed 735 laps. “In spite of all of the problems we had it was a great experience,” Pridmore said. “I think we showed we have potential. We just need a little more seat time and we’ll be right there. I’m hoping they’ll have us back. It would be great to be able to move into sports car racing. I’m sure Scott and Jeff feels the same.”

Larry Lawrence | Archives Editor

In addition to writing our Archives section on a weekly basis, Lawrence is another who is capable of covering any event we throw his way.