DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The Sunoco Rolex 24 At Daytona Challenge belongs to Italy's Ivan Bellarosa.
Last weekend in Dijon, France, Bellarosa, a competitor in the SPEED EuroSeries, clinched the Sunoco Rolex 24 At Daytona Challenge and has secured a coveted driver's seat with a to-be-determined Daytona Prototype team in the 51st Rolex 24 At Daytona on Jan. 26-27, 2013.
The 37-year-old Bellarosa, who drives a Wolf Racing GB08 for Team Avelon in the Speed EuroSeries, locked up the title with a pair of pole positions.
"I'm so happy to have won the Challenge," Bellarosa said. "I want to thank Avalon, Wolf and of course Sunoco for this amazing opportunity. I can't wait to get going and am really looking forward to seeing Daytona International Speedway and getting in the DP."
The Sunoco Rolex 24 At Daytona Challenge is a competition between racers in selected Sunoco-fueled championships in Europe. The driver who accumulates the most points wins a fully-funded race seat in a Daytona Prototype in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the prestigious season-opening event for the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series.
The most recent Sunoco Rolex 24 Challenge winner was Brazilian Felipe Nasr, who competed in the 2012 Rolex 24 with Michael Shank Racing and was part of the driving team that finished third overall. Other past winners of the Sunoco Rolex 24 Challenge include Ross Kaiser and inaugural winner Derek Johnston.
Meanwhile the Sunoco GRAND-AM 200 Challenge, which will award a driving spot in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge race at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Jan. 25, is still up for grabs with just 20 points separating five drivers.
For more information on the Sunoco Rolex 24 At Daytona Challenge, visit www.sunocodaytonachallenge.com.
The Rolex 24 At Daytona, the kick-off event to Budweiser Speedweeks 2013, showcases the world's best drivers competing against each other lap after lap for 24 hours on Daytona International Speedway's challenging and demanding 3.56-mile road course.
Two-day tickets for the Rolex 24 At Daytona start at $35 and are available online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.
Fans can follow sports cars on Twitter at GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series