By Josh Farmer, IndyCar Reporter
Years in IndyCar: 11
Laps led: 2,227
2016 Team: KV Racing
2017 Team: Dale Coyne Racing
Sebastien Bourdais has all the makings of a return to top form in 2017.
During his three-year stint at KV Racing, the four-time Champ Car Champion scored wins at Toronto (2014), Detroit and Milwaukee (2015) and Detroit in (2016).
He ended the 2017 season 14th in the standings but scored nearly as many points as he did the last two years when he finished tenth overall. The Frenchman squeezed all that he could out of KV Racing’s modest budget throughout his tenure there. While his results are passable given what he had at KV, the dominator Bourdais that we saw in Champ Car never surfaced.
For 2017, he is moving back to Dale Coyne Racing’s Honda-powered outlet, who he previously drove for in 2011.
DCR had a solid run with the late Justin Wilson from 2012-14 and scored some one-off wins with Mike Conway at Detroit in 2013 and Carlos Huertas at Houston in 2014. They also found their way to the front several times last year with Conor Daly.
This time, the team has gone all out in order to ensure a good run.
The team has gained Craig Hampson, who most recently worked at Andretti Autosport. Hampson and Bourdais had one of the best records in Indy car racing at Newman Haas racing. Their success included four straight championships in Champ Car from 2004-2007 along with 31 wins.
The chemistry that Hampson and Bourdais built up in their previous outing has been rekindled in the few times that they have tested in the offseason.
Pair that with Olivier Boisson coming over from KV with Bourdais, the team has a solid shot of closing the gap to the top teams.