Juan Pablo Montoya put the world of endurance racing on notice Wednesday when he announced that he will get behind the wheel of an LMP2 racing car at this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans.
You know the saying, you can take the man out of racing but you can't take racing out of the man. Such is the case of the feisty veteran, who despite retiring from IndyCar to concentrate on his son's rising karting career, he can't seem to stay away from competing in world-class racing events. First, he joined Roger Penske's Acura team in the IMSA Weathertech SportsCar Championship, and now, the flagship endurance race in the world. Not too bad for a retiree, huh?
United Autosports released a statement confirming that the 42-year-old Colombian will pilot the No. 32 Ligier JS P217 along with American and Swiss racing drivers Will Owen and Hugo de Sadeleer. While Montoya's participation at Le Mans doesn't come as a huge surprise, his choice of race team does, considering he fared extremely well during a World Endurance Championship test with Porsche in Bahrain back in 2015.
“I’m very excited about the opportunity to experience Le Mans and I’m looking forward to joining United Autosports after they had such a strong finish at Le Mans last year," said Montoya. "I’ve always watched the race so I’m very happy to finally be part of it. Hopefully we can have a shot at a win.”
Zak Brown, United Autosports team owner and chairman also shared his excitement about Montoya joining the driver lineup. And in case you're wondering, yes, it's the same Zak Brown that's the executive director of the McLaren Technology Group (the F1 team) and the man behind Fernando Alonso's Indy 500 deal with Andretti Autosport.
“Juan Pablo has been around racing for a long time now and he knows what it takes to win," said Brown. "I’m sure he will bring experience and speed to the team, which is exactly what we need for such a demanding race as Le Mans.”