Verizon IndyCar Series driver Sebastien Bourdais isn’t a stranger to winning big endurance races.
The four-time Champ Car World Series champion went to victory lane in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in 2015 with Action Express Racing as part of the team’s overall win.
He hopes to return to victory lane this year, albeit in the GT Le Mans class and with a team he hopes can bring him glory at his home race in Le Mans, France – Ford Chip Ganassi Racing.
“It’s obviously an important, big race,” said Bourdais, who was announced as one of Ford Chip Ganassi Racing’s drivers for the 24 Hours of Le Mans earlier this week. “It was a tough challenge for the car to debut in a 24-Hour race, and we paid the price, but such is racing sometimes. We didn’t get a whole lot of luck with some small things we never encountered in testing. But I’m really pumped about the Ford GT program. Pumped about going to Le Mans and hopefully we can get on the podium and get some wins.”
Bourdais, who will compete alongside Joey Hand and Dirk Muller in the No. 66 Ford GT joins reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon (with Ryan Briscoe and Richard Westbrook in the No. 67 Ford GT), Ryan Hunter-Reay (No. 90 Corvette DP) and Spencer Pigot (with Jonathan Bomarito and Tristan Nunez in No. 55 Mazda Prototype) in the field for the 12-hour race.
Hunter-Reay, who helped teammates Ryan Dalziel and Marc Goosens claim a podium finish in the Rolex 24 At Daytona in January is looking forward to the challenge of the second half of what will be a Florida doubleheader after racing on the Streets of St. Petersburg on March 13.
“We started the year out with a podium at Daytona and the team had a productive test at Sebring,” said Hunter-Reay, who also opened his Verizon IndyCar Series season with a podium at St. Petersburg.
“We had some work to do coming out of Daytona, but we’re heading to Sebring with some more confidence. The Sebring 12 is one of my favorite endurance races. Just like St. Pete, it’s a home race, and I think we have a good chance.”
Hunter-Reay, who will team with Goosens for the sprint race at Long Beach next month, said driving the car will keep him sharp for coming Verizon IndyCar Series races in April and May.
“It keeps me sharp and on my toes,” he said. “(because I’m) thinking about different driving styles and different approaches in the car. I enjoy endurance driving and I’ve had the chance to win in class at Sebring, but never an overall win. Hopefully we can get one of those.”