Legendary road racer and Northern California native Scott Pruett will drive the Toyota Camry pace car to kick off the Toyota/Save Mart 350 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Sonoma Raceway on Sunday, June 24.
Pruett, an Auburn resident, announced his retirement after 50 years of racing following the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in January. Recognized as the most-decorated road racer of the modern era, Pruett is a five-time champion in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with 60 sports-car series wins, in addition to claiming victories in the International Race of Champions (IROC) circuit. Since 2004, Pruett has led an astonishing 5,262 laps in full-time sports car competition, and in the last 10 years he’s led 2,010 laps in the Rolex 24 alone. He is tied with Hurley Haywood for the most overall wins in the Rolex 24 at five.
Pruett has also competed in both NASCAR’s premier Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the IndyCar Series, where he won twice. He even made a pair of starts in the famed Australia SuperCars Series. Pruett earned three top-five finishes in 40 starts in the Monster Energy Series, including a runner-up finish at Watkins Glen (2003) and a third-place finish in Sonoma (2004).
“I’m so honored and excited to be back at Sonoma,” said Pruett, who has seven Cup Series starts and a Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car victory on his home track in Sonoma. “I love this track. It’s right in my backyard, and I have many great memories here. I can’t wait to lead those boys to the green flag, and just hope I remember to pull off into pit lane!”
Pruett has been widely honored in the motorsport community, including receiving the Phil Hill Award of Excellence in 2016 and two hall of fame inductions in 2017 – the Motorsports Hall of Fame and the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame. He was also named the King of Karting and inducted into the World Karting Hall of Fame in 1991 following 10 professional karting championships.
Pruett and wife, Judy, began making award-winning wine under Pruett Vineyard in 2007. Since then, they have garnered high acclaim from their peers and continually earn ratings in the mid-90s from Wine Spectator. Their 2012 vintage Championship Cuvee was rated the best Syrah in America, followed up by their 2014 vintage Championship Cuvee, which was tied for highest rated Syrah in the world. The couple has also written and published a number of children’s books about racing, published by their company Word Weaver Books.
Pruett will be recognized during the NASCAR Drivers’ Meeting and the Toyota/Save Mart 350 Pre-Race Show, powered by Friedman’s Home Improvement, prior to hitting the track. Tickets are still available for the Toyota/Save Mart 350, which marks NASCAR’s only visit to Northern California. For tickets or more information, visit www.sonomaraceway.com/NASCAR or call 800-870-7223.
Toyota/Save Mart 350 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
WHAT: Toyota/Save Mart 350
WHEN: June 22-24
2017 POLE WINNER: Kyle Larson (Chip Ganassi Racing)
2017 RACE WINNER: Kevin Harvick (Stewart-Haas Racing)
NOTABLE: The weekend will also feature Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying and the Carneros 200 NASCAR Pro Series West race on Saturday.
TICKETS: $25-$140 single day/$95-$180 weekend; parking is FREE; kids 12 and under FREE on Friday and Saturday; $10 kids tickets on Sunday. Military and group discounts available.
Sonoma Raceway PR