Ex-Champ Car racer Ryan Dalziel has inked a deal that will see him compete in the Superleague Formula this season, spearheading the challenge for Rangers.

The 26-year-old will make his debut aboard the Rangers-liveried Superleague Formula car at the opening round of the season at Donington Park, at the end of this month.

Dalziel's confirmation marks the first time the Scotsman will contest a full European-based season since he competed in the 2001 British Formula Three Championship.

Since then, Ryan's talents have been showcased predominantly in North America, notably in the Champ Car World Series and the likes of the American Le Mans Series and Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series.

"I'm absolutely delighted to have been selected to represent Rangers in the Superleague Formula. I'm excited to be returning to Donington Park for the inaugural race even though it's been seven years since I last raced there which seems hard to believe," Dalziel said.

"This is a great new series, one that both football fans and race fans can really get behind. I'm obviously thrilled to be driving for Rangers having grown up in and around Glasgow. Coincidently, my race helmet's colours are almost identical to those of Rangers so in many ways this is a perfect fit.

"I'm just excited to be a Scottish driver racing for a Scottish club, it means a lot and I hope the fans really get behind our efforts starting at Donington Park."

Making his full-time debut in the Champ Car World Series last season, Dalziel scored six top-ten finishes and led laps at the Toronto Grand Prix despite racing for a rookie team.

In addition to his accomplishments in Champ Car, he kicked off 2007 with a second-place podium finish racing a Daytona Prototype in the 'Rolex 24 at Daytona', the opening round of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and America's leading twice-around the clock endurance event.

This year Dalziel went one better in round five of the championship when he won at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

"We are thrilled to have Ryan represent the club in Superleague Formula. He has great international experience, he comes from Glasgow and he is a Rangers fan - it really is a perfect combination," Rangers commercial manager, Stuart Cain added.

"I am sure our fans are going to be very excited at this news and we will all be looking forward to seeing him in action at Donington Park."

Dalziel drove the Rangers car, which was launched earlier this year at Ibrox Stadium in Glasgow, for the first time at the Superleague Formula test at the Vallelunga circuit near Rome recently.

He was joined on track by a number of other leading young stars including Robert Doornbos (AC Milan), Yelmer Buurman (PSV Eindhoven), and Daniel la Rosa (Olympiacos).

Rangers were the first British-based football club to commit to the new series that is looking 'to fuse the passion of football with the thrill and excitement of top-flight motor racing utilizing V12-powered 750bhp single-seater race cars in each clubs colours'.

20 clubs are lining up for the six-round inaugural season, set to run from August to November 2008, with Rangers joined on the grid by the likes of AC Milan, PSV Eindhoven, FC Porto, Olympiacos and Tottenham Hotspur.


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