In racing, timing can be everything and, with the recent tumult in the open-wheel world, Samax Motorsport timed it just right to secure the services of one of the top team managers in the sport.
Phil LePan has already started work with the Florida-based team, which will return to the tracks on 29 March as part of the GAINSCO Grand Prix at Homestead Miami Speedway, and reunites with Samax technical director Steve Challis, with whom he worked closely at previous employer Forsythe Racing.
“The slower pace of the Rolex schedule is good for old guys like us!” joked Challis, who joined Samax ahead of the 2007 season, “Phil is going to be a great asset for this team. Sure, he doesn't know everything about these cars yet, but he will soon enough and, in the meantime, there is no-one else you want to have running things on your side.”
“Phil was looking to do something different, and we were lucky enough to be able to grab him before anybody else did,” team owner Peter Baron revealed, "Last year, due to budget constraints, we operated without a full-time team manager, so we're thrilled to have a manager with Phil's credentials helping lead the team.
"An added bonus, Phil already has a lot of experience working with our technical director back at Forsythe, which resulted in numerous wins, so we are really happy to have him on board and are looking forward to our home race at Homestead.”
The Samax team has been busy since the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona, making the move to Dinan-prepared BMW power plants and putting the new package through its paces during February's Rolex Series open test at Homestead.