Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) will add a second V-Performance Academy Cadillac DPi-V.R and three new full-time drivers to their 2022 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship team.
Piloting the two entries will be returning Cadillac DPi-V.R veteran Renger van der Zande (Netherlands), Sebastien Bourdais (France), Earl Bamber (New Zealand), and Alex Lynn (Britain). Three of the four drivers have competed in the Cadillac DPi-V.R in the past with Bamber being new to the car.
Van der Zande, with one 2021 win at Detroit in the V-Performance Academy Cadillac, is looking forward to working with his new teammates for next season and competing for the championship.
“It is great news to have Sebastien, Alex, and Earl as new teammates,” van der Zande said. “They are all high-class, proven race car drivers. I think they will be a good fit with the team. Sebastien has done everything in the world, he has a lot of raw speed. I know Earl very well from our junior series and he’s an LMP1 overall winner. Alex comes to us from Formula E and has a lot of sports car experience. I feel great about coming back with the Chip Ganassi Racing team. I feel more at home than ever with them. They put a lot of responsibility on everyone. Chip and Mike Hull run a great operation, that is why they have been successful. Although I can’t wait until next year, we still have Petit Le Mans coming up, so we need to finish 2021 strong.”
Bourdais, four-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES Champion, comes over from the JDC-Miller Motorsports team to compete for the full season.
“I’m super excited to reunite with Chip Ganassi Racing,” Bourdais said. “We have had our fair share of successes in the past and I can’t wait to start working with the drivers like Renger, Earl and Alex. This is obviously a bit of a turning point in my career, that will see me transitioning most of my attention to sports car racing, but I remain in the GM family. I can’t thank everyone involved enough for their trust and continued support. I am convinced Cadillac, Chip, Mike (Hull), Steve (Eriksen, team manager) and the entire team will give us all the tools we need to drive our cars to victory lane. Bring on 2022!”
Lynn has two starts in the Cadillac DPi-V.R and brings his Formula E and Le Mans experience to the fold.
“I am really excited to get to race in the Cadillac with Chip Ganassi Racing in 2022,” Lynn said. “I’ve driven the Cadillac before and have had success in the car. It’s been a while since I drove the Cadillac, but it left a lasting impression on me. I raced it once and won at Sebring. I would like to reignite that emotion. I am excited to run a full season in the car.
“My teammates’ records speak for themselves when it comes to talent. Sebastien, Renger, and Earl have had a lot of success individually, so it will be great to work alongside them and add some more hardware to the Chip Ganassi trophy cabinet.
“The goal is to win. I have always dreamed of winning the big races in America. I’ve been fortunate enough to win Sebring. I am hungry to win the Rolex 24 At Daytona and put a good championship run together. Cadillac has a winning heritage in IMSA and we want to be adding to that in 2022.”
Bamber will be making his first start in a Cadillac at the Rolex 24 At Daytona in January after coming from sports cars and the Porsche LMP1 program where he won overall at Le Mans in 2015 and 2017.
“I am incredibly excited and honoured to join Cadillac and Chip Ganassi Racing for 2022,” Bamber said. “When you talk about legendary sports car racing teams you think of CGR. They’ve already won their class at Le Mans. It’s a world class team and it is amazing to see what they’ve done in their first year with the Cadillac DPi-V.R. I am also excited to race in the top class of the IMSA WeatherTech Championship.
“I don’t know who my direct teammate will be, but the lineup that the team has put together is awesome and world class. Renger is a Daytona and championship winner already. Sebastien is someone I’ve looked up to as a kid when he was in Champ Car and INDYCAR. Alex with his Formula E and sports car experience is fast as well. We have a nice mix of talent from different racing series.
“My personal hope is to win at Daytona. It has eluded me for many years as I have finished on the podium multiple times. I would also love to win some of the other highlight races and the team and driver’s championship.”
The team will announce driver pairings and endurance drivers prior to the Roar Before the 24 at Daytona in January.
The IMSA WeatherTech Championship will conclude its season with the traditional Petit Le Mans to run at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta, Nov. 11-13.
Source. Kyle Chura/Photo. Cadillac/Richard Prince