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Scott Pruett recognized ahead of last ride

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Adoring fan response and fellow driver congratulations greeted Scott Pruett everywhere he went in the Daytona International Speedway garage Saturday morning in the hours just prior to the afternoon’s Rolex 24 At Daytona green flag.

The retiring five-time Rolex 24 overall winner was gracious and appreciative of the attention, however, he said he remained 100 percent committed to adding another trophy courtesy of his final career start this weekend.

“The intensity is starting to build,’’ Pruett said following the Rolex 24 drivers’ meeting Saturday morning. “It’s business as usual, but busier than usual,’’ he said smiling. “So much fun.’’

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With the Chairman of IMSA, Jim France, on one side and IMSA CEO Ed Bennett on the other of Pruett, IMSA President Scott Atherton presented the great champion specially commissioned artwork depicting cars Pruett drove throughout his championship IMSA career.

“Wow, this is humbling and wonderful,’’ Pruett told the crowded meeting. “I hope you have a wonderful and safe race.’’

Pruett and his No. 14 3GT Racing Lexus RC F GT3 racing team will start fourth in the GT Daytona (GTD) class.