Ex-Formula 1 driver Juan Pablo Montoya will race full-time in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship next year after being confirmed as one of Team Penske’s drivers for its new Acura Daytona Prototype International programme.

Montoya linked up with Penske back in 2014 upon his return to IndyCar competition after 14 years away, winning the Indianapolis 500 and finishing as runner-up in the championship the following year.

Montoya was replaced in Penske’s full-season IndyCar line-up by Josef Newgarden for 2017, but entered in a fifth car for the two races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May, as well as helping with its testing programme.

Penske announced last month it would be entering IMSA’s DPi class for 2017 with Acura, with Montoya and defending drivers’ champion Dane Cameron being confirmed as one of its driver pairings on Tuesday.

“I have really enjoyed working with Roger [Penske] and Team Penske over the last four years. When Roger asked if I’d like to be part of starting this new sports car operation with Acura, it was an easy decision,” Montoya said.

“I’ve always loved racing sports cars. It’s definitely a challenge and it’s going to be a lot of fun to develop a new car with Acura. I’m excited to start the testing of the ARX-05 next week.

“Team Penske started its winning tradition in sports cars and it’s going to be cool to be a part of a new chapter with the team.”

Penske will announce the line-up for its second full-season entry in due course, with IndyCar veteran Helio Castroneves expected to make the switch across to sports cars.

 

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