Cycling legend Sir Chris Hoy will compete in the 2016 Le Mans 24 Hours endurance race as part of his latest step to become a professional racing driver.
The eleven-time world champion and six-time Olympic gold medallist began his development as a NISMO GT Academy athlete in 2014 with a successful season driving a Nissan GT-R in the British GT Championship, before clinching the inaugural LMP3 Championship alongside Charlie Robertson in 2015.
As a result, Hoy will step up to the LMP2 class in 2016 driving a Nissan-powered Ligier JS P2 prepared by Algarve Pro Racing, kicking off his season in the European Le Mans Championship before making his debut in the Le Mans 24 Hours in June.
“In motorsports terms, it's everything. The 24 Hours of Le Mans is the pinnacle for me. It's what I've been working for over the past three years,” Hoy said.
“To get the news that I have the seat for Le Mans is amazing. I still can't quite believe it.
“It's exciting but there are a lot of steps to take between now and then so I'm trying to focus on the short-term. I'm also incredibly excited that I'm going to be starting on the same grid as all these legendary drivers.
“The time from my racing debut to getting a Le Mans drive has been short but many GT Academy athletes have done the journey even quicker. It's incredible what can be achieved with the right support and the right people around you,” Hoy said.
“I've been very lucky to have that. I've had some great driver coaching, some great advice from the drivers themselves and I've had access to the simulator. All the same support the GT Academy drivers have.
“The biggest thing in my motorsports career is Nissan has continued to provide new challenges for me. Just as I was coming to grips with the GT-R NISMO GT3, I was promoted straight away to the LM P3 prototype.
“It has been a continued series of new challenges. But the LM P2 car I'm going to race at Le Mans is the easiest and most intuitive car I've ever driven.”
Hoy will be paired with Andrea Pizzitola and Michael Munemann in the car.