Seven-time IMSA Champions and Eight-time Rolex 24 At Daytona Winners Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) announced on Thursday their IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship driver lineup with Formula One driver Kevin Magnussen joining Two-time Rolex 24 At Daytona winner Renger van der Zande for the team’s Cadillac Daytona Prototype international (DPi) entry beginning with the 2021 season.
28-year-old Danish racing driver Kevin Magnussen is currently competing in the FIA Formula One World Championship with Haas F1 Team. Prior to Formula One, Magnussen competed in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series with DAMS and won the championship in 2016 with five wins and 13 podiums. The son of former Formula One driver Jan Magnussen, he came up through the McLaren Formula One team’s Young Driver Program and drove for McLaren in the 2014 FIA Formula One World Championship.
“If you are in professional racing anywhere in the world, you know the name Chip Ganassi and what it represents in motorsports,” said Magnussen. “Chip has built one of the best racing organization’s on and off the track, and you can look back in history and see the tremendous record of success, especially as it relates to sports car racing. It’s a great opportunity for myself to team up with CGR, Renger and Cadillac. I can’t wait to get started, meet the team and begin preparations for the 2021 season.”
The 34-year-old Dutch racer recently claimed his second straight Rolex 24 At Daytona victory alongside CGR’s Six-time and reigning NTT INDYCAR SERIES Champion Scott Dixon. In 2016, van der Zande won the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with four wins, eight podiums, one pole and four fastest-laps. Prior to making a professional career in GT and LMP classes with both private and factory teams, van der Zande quickly moved up the ladder in Formula cars with Formula Renault 2.0 Netherlands and Formula 3.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to have raced and won with Scott [Dixon] in sports cars and I think he really embodies what the whole Chip Ganassi Racing organization is all about,” van der Zande said. “It’s a first-class operation and the team knows how to win the big races. One of the things that stood out to me was hearing that as a former driver, Chip always wanted to create and build a team that he would want to drive for. He has certainly done that, and those results speak for themselves across many series around the world. I think Kevin and I are both excited to say the least, and ready to get the 2021 season started at Daytona.”
Endurance drivers and livery for the 2021 campaign will be announced at a later date.
CGR has the greatest stretch in Rolex 24 At Daytona history highlighted by eight wins and three second-place finishes from 2006-2018. The team also has seven Championships (2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013) and 64 race wins to their credit since their introduction to sports car racing in 2004. Chip Ganassi is the only team owner in history to win three-straight Rolex 24 At Daytonas (2006-2008). The team also has wins in both the 12 Hours of Sebring and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
In 2020, Cadillac scored its fourth consecutive Rolex 24 At Daytona win, and followed with wins at Sebring and Petit Le Mans en route to a second-place finish in the Championship. In 2019, they scored wins at the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the 12 Hours of Sebring, Long Beach and Petit Le Mans. The 2018 season saw the program win the Rolex 24 At Daytona en route to the Prototype Driver, Team and Manufacturer Championships. The program began in 2017 when Cadillac teams won every title in the inaugural season of the IMSA DPi formula including a one-two-three sweep of the Driver Championship, along with the Team and Manufacturers titles. In all, Cadillac teams combined to win seven races in 2017.