By Joey Barnes, Editor-in-Chief
INDIANAPOLIS — A new outfit to the NTT IndyCar Series this year, DragonSpeed is ready to make a bigger commitment for the 2020 season.
The team has long been associated as a sports car presence in the FIA World Endurance Championship, but opted to expand their efforts with a five-race campaign – St. Petersburg, Barber Motorsports Park, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Road America and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course – with driver Ben Hanley in IndyCar for 2019.
Elton Julian, team principal of DragonSpeed, discussed their future plans for their No. 81 Chevrolet on the lead up to qualifying for the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge.
“The Le Mans 24 Hours next month will be our final LMP1 and regular WEC outing, allowing us to ramp up our IndyCar efforts on both the technical and marketing fronts,” said Julian.
“We’re not leaving the WEC completely, as we plan to enter our number 21 LMP2 ORECA O7-Gibson in individual rounds, including Spa, Brazil, and Le Mans, with Le Mans of course subject to us earning or being granted an invitation.
“We’re also considering running Daytona and Sebring with IMSA again. We’ll definitely be continuing in the ELMS, which we think offers the best sportscar racing on the planet and remains the ideal series for the top gentleman drivers. With the kind of competition you get from 19 regular LMP2 entries, we take pride in the fact that the last two ELMS victories with a Bronze driver, in 2016 and 2019, have been ours.”
Overall, the concept comes from what the team feels it can gain more from the NTT IndyCar Series.
“For us, the potential for growing DragonSpeed as an engineering and commercial concern is far clearer in IndyCar than anywhere else in the sport, given the quality of racing and stable formula,” added Julian.
“That’s what’s driven our decision.”