Monday, 20 December 2010 18:04
de Ferran Dragon Racing today confirms that it has signed the exceptional driving skills of Brazilian star and 2004 Indy Car Champion Tony Kanaan to compete in the 2011 IZOD IndyCar series.
de Ferran Dragon Racing President and fellow countryman, Gil de Ferran, both a friend and long time on track rival of Kanaan, is delighted to have secured the services of such a successful driver for the young team.
“This is a great signing and a major coup for de Ferran Dragon Racing,” said de Ferran.
“It is fantastic that we have Tony on board; he is a proven Champion and brings with him a great record of successes on the track. Tony has consistently placed at the sharp end of the field for more than a decade and shows no signs of letting up. I am sure his contribution to the team, both in terms of speed and experience, will be invaluable to our development and future success.”
de Ferran, a two time IndyCar Champion and 2003 Indy 500 winner continued: “Tony’s presence is also a significant vote of confidence for our young and developing team. This news certainly clarifies that we are serious in our intention to become a major force in the series.”
Amongst Kanaan’s spectacular accomplishments to date, in 2004 he set an unrivalled record for leading the most number of laps in an IndyCar Series title winning season and, in the same year, he became the first driver in major auto racing history to complete every lap of every race for an entire season on his way to winning the crown.
Further underlining his consistency, he has never finished outside the top six in any of the eight seasons that he has contested the IndyCar Series.
“I am really excited to be working with de Ferran Dragon Racing,” confirmed Kanaan.
”I have a great deal of respect for Steve [Luczo], Jay [Penske] and, of course, Gil, who I have known for many years both as a driver and now as a team owner. I know that the owners have a passion for the sport and a dream of being among the best in the series and will assemble all the right skills to turn this team into something really special and I want to be around for that!"
“There is no doubt we have a lot work in front of us but, the energy I’ve felt from this team for becoming a top player and winning convinced me that this is a team where I can truly contribute and make a difference through my years of experience. One thing is for sure, 2011 is going to be a great journey for us all.”
The 2011 IZOD IndyCar series hits the track on 27 March 2011 at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Florida.