Former IndyCar champion and 24 Hours of Daytona race winner Tony Kanaan will replace the injured Sebastien Bourdais in the #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing entry to defend its Le Mans 24 Hours GT-Pro crown alongside Dirk Muller and Joey Hand.

After Bourdais suffered multiple leg fractures in a qualifying crash for the Indianapolis 500, Kanaan has been drafted in as his replacement and will make his Le Mans 24 Hour debut this year.

The #68 Ford won the GT class last year upon the American manufacturer's official return to Le Mans and the World Endurance Championship.

"We're very pleased we are able to get a driver of Tony's experience and talent in the No. 68 Ford GT for the Le Mans 24," Dave Pericak, global director of Ford Performance, said. "It's certainly not the ideal situation and we're heartbroken that Sebastien won't be back to defend his race victory, since we know how much that race means to him personally. He is an important part of our family, and we look forward to him making a complete recovery."

Kanaan, who signed for Chip Ganassi in IndyCar in 2014, contested the 24 Hours of Daytona for Ford in January alongside Andy Priaulx and Harry Tincknell to finish fifth in the GTLM class.

The Brazilian says the prestigious Le Mans race has been a huge ambitions of his and is honoured to be called up by Ford.

"It's an honour to be named a part of the Ford GT lineup for Ford Chip Ganassi Racing at the Le Mans 24," Kanaan said. "It's obviously an unfortunate situation that brought us to this point with S?bastien's injuries, but I'm going to do my best to take his place and try to help win this amazing race for the team again this year.

"This race has definitely been on my bucket list for a long time, so I'm thankful that Chip and our partners at Ford have given me this opportunity."

Kanaan will take on the Detroit double-header this weekend (3-4 June) and the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 in Texas next weekend (10 June) before heading to Le Mans, with the 24 Hour race taking place on the 17-18 June.

 

Comments

Loading Comments...