IndyCar Series driver Townsend Bell returned home to San Luis Obispo, CA after a grueling 36 hours at Daytona, only to find out his home was burglarized while he was gone.
Bell took to Twitter to get the word out that his Daytona Rolex he recieved for winning the GTD class at Daytona in 2014, a Tudor watch he won for capturing the IMSA GTD championship in 2015 as well as 10 Indy 500 rings he was given for his 10 starts were among the items taken. He did so in hopes that someone might see the items pop up on eBay or at a local pawn shop.
Since announcing the theft on Twitter, Bell has shared more details of the events with motorsport.com.
"I left my phone in the Uber ride I took to LAX to fly to Daytona, so I was without a phone for the entire weekend," Bell said. "My house got broken into on Friday night, my wife and kids were thankfully not home at the time, but my wife didn't have a way to call me on Friday night and didn't want to send me an email, bless her, before the race started.
"Then last night I got to the airport and I had my laptop and she asked me to call, but I couldn't because I was just about to get on the plane," added Bell. "So I didn't find out the house had been broken into until I got home about 10:30 p.m. last night."
That's when he found out his prized mementos from his racing career were among the things stolen as the burglars stole the safe out of the wall.
"They basically ransacked the house, the typical burglary scene you'll see in a movie," bell said. "They rifled through the drawers including the locked ones, ripped the safe out of the closet, took jewelry, cash and all the stuff that is small and easy to grab. Unfortunately that included my racing things."
"It's like getting kicked in the nuts when you come home already shattered from being up for 36 hours," Bell added.
Bell said in addition to his home, multiple other homes in the area were hit by the intruders. He said the perpetrators were wearing hoodies so they were unable to get a clear image from the home surveillance footage.