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Cadillac names first LMDh drivers – EAST AUTO NEWS

Cadillac names first LMDh drivers


Three acquainted names to the Cadillac racing household – together with a former DPi champion and a dynamic duo that has supplied a lot pleasure in 2022 – plus a newcomer to Cadillac and top-level prototypes will make up the core driver lineup in Cadillac’s LMDh vehicles within the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTP class for 2023.

Renger van der Zande and Sebastien Bourdais, who’ve paired for 3 victories this season within the Chip Ganassi Racing No. 01 Cadillac, will proceed as teammates in a Chip Ganassi Racing-prepared Cadillac V-LMDh. 2021 DPi champion Pipo Derani might be joined by Alexander Sims within the sister automobile ready by Motion Specific Racing.

Further drivers for the 2 Cadillac Racing GTP entries for long-distance races on the 2023 IMSA schedule, which begins with the 61st Rolex 24 At Daytona on Jan. 28-29, might be introduced later.

“The brand new GTP class is ready to create a number of the most enjoyable competitors in a long time,” mentioned Rory Harvey, Vice President World Cadillac. “We look ahead to seeing our world-class driver lineup within the Cadillac V-LMDh and we welcome Alexander Sims to Cadillac.”

Sims will make his IMSA prototype racing debut at Daytona within the Cadillac, however has already served as a member of the GM household, becoming a member of Corvette Racing as a 3rd driver for the endurance races in 2021 and on the 24 Hours of Le Mans this yr.

Earlier IMSA expertise was with BMW Group RLL within the GTLM class. He has gained a number of the world’s largest GT endurance races, together with the 24 Hours of Spa and the Nürburgring 24 Hours, and can be a race winner in Components E.

“I’m excited to be racing again in IMSA full time and to be driving the Cadillac V-LMDh,” mentioned Sims. “It’s a formidable piece of equipment. I had a very good couple of years with Corvette performing some GT racing, which introduced me again to the IMSA paddock.

“It’s racing that I completely adore. The format of the racing, the competitiveness, the tracks that we go to are good.

“To be stepping throughout inside the GM household to Cadillac within the high tier of racing with Motion Specific, which is a championship-winning group, is thrilling for me.”

Sims has already sampled the V-LMDh, becoming a member of Derani in improvement periods at Michelin Raceway Street Atlanta and Watkins Glen Worldwide.

Derani, who clinched the 2021 driver title on the ultimate laps of the Petit Le Mans, has posted six wins within the Cadillac DPi-V.R since becoming a member of Motion Specific Racing for the 2019 season.

General, Derani has made 59 begins in IMSA prototype competitors since 2016. He and his new companion had been opponents in Components 3.

“As a driver, it’s a implausible alternative to be part of a program of the way forward for endurance racing. To affix Cadillac as a manufacturing unit driver is a dream come true,” Derani mentioned.

Van der Zande has registered eight IMSA victories in a Cadillac DPi-V.R since 2018 and is finishing his first season sharing the seat with Bourdais. Bourdais, the four-time IndyCar Sequence champion, has 4 wins in a Cadillac DPi-V.R, together with the 12 Hours of Sebring in 2021 with JDC-Miller Motorsports.

Collectively they’ve posted some spectacular performances in 2022, together with a drive from the again to first

for Bourdais at Lengthy Seashore and a victorious late-race efficiency by van der Zande at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park.

“I’m actually excited and stoked to stick with Chip Ganassi Racing and Cadillac the place I’ve been driving since 2018,” declared van der Zande. “These are the manufacturers I’ve been with for a very long time and it’s the place I really feel very snug as a result of we have now the identical objectives and mentality of the way to method racing and the way to win.

“I’m thrilled to stick with Seb. We had a full season collectively and we complement one another very nicely on and off observe when it comes to cooperation in order that’s one thing the place it’s very computerized and a pleasure to proceed working with him.”

Cadillac has logged a variety of miles with its drivers at a number of tracks similar to Watkins Glen Worldwide and Michelin Raceway Street Atlanta whereas testing the 5.5-liter V8-powered V-LMDh, which was co-developed by chassis producer Dallara, Cadillac Design and Cadillac Racing.

“The event has began on the brand new automobile and we’re making an attempt to take it to as many locations as potential and I’ve been part of that for the reason that starting,” Bourdais mentioned. “It’s one thing I very a lot take pleasure in, creating a brand new automobile, it’s a bit like a brand new child. You sort of put your mark on it and provides your suggestions and dream to develop it in a means the place you are feeling one with the automobile.

“We now have a really robust base and Cadillac and Dallara have achieved an important job. It’s a really thrilling program and a really thrilling new period for endurance racing.”

Cadillac can even compete within the Hypercar class of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in 2023 as the only real U.S.-based producer. Drivers of the Cadillac V-LMDh entry might be introduced later for the seven-race schedule that features the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The season begins March 17 with the 1,000 Miles of Sebring.

Cadillac names first LMDh drivers – EAST AUTO NEWS
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