Buckler, Ganassi, Rahal and Riley are Candidates for 2015 Rolex Bob Snodgrass Award of Excellence

Company press release.

DAYTONA, FLA. (22 January 2016) – Four sports car team owners – Kevin Buckler (Petaluma, Calif.), Chip Ganassi (Pittsburgh, Pa.), Bobby Rahal (Chicago, Ill.) and Bill Riley (Mooresville, N.C.) – have been named as candidates for the 2015 Rolex Bob Snodgrass Award of Excellence, presented by Gorsline Company, based on their team's success on the track during the 2015 race season. The award recipient will be chosen by a panel of motor sports professionals and announced on Friday, January 29, 2016, during the Grand Marshal dinner at the Rolex 24 At Daytona. The 2015 honoree will be presented with a specially engraved Rolex Stainless Steel and Platinum Yacht-Master timepiece.

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), John Stevenson (2013) and Alex Job (2014).

Backgrounds on candidates for the 2015 Rolex Bob Snodgrass Award of Excellence follow:

Kevin Buckler, TRG-Aston Martin Racing

Buckler, is the CEO and owner of Adobe Road Winery and TRG-AMR North America. TRG has run a multi-car effort at Daytona since 1997 and is the only team to ever run a five-car team successfully for eight straight years.

Highlights of the 2015 season include winning pole position at the Rolex 24 At Daytona, second-place finishes at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, the Chevrolet Sports Car Classic, Continental Tire Road Race Showcase and the Oak Tree Grand Prix, and finishing third in the Northeast Grand Prix, to earn second place in the GTD Championships for Driver and Team.

Chip Ganassi, Chip Ganassi Racing

A fixture in the auto racing industry for over 30 years as a race-car driver and team owner, Ganassi is considered one of the most successful and innovative owners in the sport. He currently counts two cars in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, four in the Verizon IndyCar Series, two in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, two in the World Endurance Championship and two cars in Global Rally Cross.

Overall, in his 26 years of ownership, Ganassi's teams have won 18 championships including his 11th IndyCar Championship in 2015. In addition, his team picked up its sixth overall victory in the 2015 Rolex 24 At Daytona.

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    He manages his teams from state-of-the-art race shop facilities in Indianapolis and Concord, N.C., and a corporate office in Pittsburgh, Penn.

    Bill Riley, Riley Motorsports

    Bill Riley is President of Riley Technologies and also serves as Team Director for the affiliated company, Riley Motorsports, the entrant for the No. 93 ViperExchange.com Dodge Viper GT3-R that won the 2015 Rolex 24 At Daytona in the GTD class. Riley continues to operate both companies with his father and company founder, Bob Riley, a member of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.

    Their Daytona Prototype produced Riley's most successful string of overall Rolex 24 victories, winning the Rolex 24 overall nine straight times from 2005 through 2013 with several different teams racing various generations of the Riley Mk VI, XX and XXII chassis.

    The 2015 Rolex 24 saw yet another overall Riley Daytona Prototype win by Chip Ganassi Racing. Along with the Viper team's GTD victory, the pair of 2015 Rolex 24 victories marked the 29th and 30th wins for Riley-built, -run or -entered race cars and teams in Daytona's famous day-long race.

    He also led the ViperExchange.com Riley Motorsports Dodge Viper GT3-R team to a class-leading four IMSA GT Daytona (GTD) race wins in 2015 and the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup (NAEC) GTD Team and Driver Championships.

    BOBBY RAHAL, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

    Robert 'Bobby' Woodward Rahal worked his way up through the racing ranks starting with the SCCA's feeder series to Formula Atlantic and then onto European Formula Two. In an 18-year career spanning F1, Can-Am, Le Mans/IMSA and CART, he's won the 1986 Indy 500, the 1981 24 Hours of Daytona and the 1987 12 Hours of Sebring. Rahal started 264 races for five teams, taking pole 18 times and scoring 24 wins before retiring from competitive racing after the 1988 season. With Buddy Rice's win of the 2004 Indy 500, Rahal became one of a handful of individuals to win the Indy 500 as both a driver and a team owner.

    As a principal in Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, Rahal has overseen the growth of the team from a one-car program to a multi-car, multi-discipline organization. Rahal has also been responsible for finding and developing some of the top young talent in open-wheel racing.

    In 2014 the team joined the newly-named United Sports Car Series (USCC) which resulted from the merger of the ALMS and Grand Am Series. The two-car BMW GTLM class effort resulted in six podium finishes including highlights of a runner-up finish in the team's first ever appearance in the Rolex 24 at Daytona and third place podium finish in the 12 Hours of Sebring. In 2015, the team earned three wins, two poles and a total of eight podiums and finished second in the Manufacturer, Team and Driver Championships.

    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.

    About Rolex - Leading brand of the Swiss watch industry, Rolex, headquartered in Geneva, enjoys an unrivalled reputation for quality and expertise the world over. Its Oyster watches, all certified as chronometers for their precision, are symbols of excellence, performance and prestige. Pioneer in the development of the wristwatch as early as 1905, the brand is at the origin of numerous major watchmaking innovations, such as the Oyster, the first waterproof wristwatch, launched in 1926, and the Perpetual rotor self-winding mechanism introduced in 1931. Rolex has registered over 400 patents in the course of its history. A truly integrated manufacturing company, Rolex designs, develops and produces in-house all the essential components of its watches, from the casting of the gold alloys to the machining, crafting, assembly and finishing of the movement, case, dial and bracelet. Rolex is also actively involved in supporting the arts, sports, exploration, the spirit of enterprise, and the environment through a broad palette of sponsoring activities, as well as philanthropic programs.

    About Gorsline Company - Gorsline Company, headquartered in Rochester, N.Y., pioneered the business of providing insurance for high-risk professionals. The company specializes in providing racing drivers and owners creative, custom-designed insurance packages and estate planning strategies.

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