Magnus with Archangel Adds Rolex 24 Drivers; Pigot Replaces Fraga for Rolex 24
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The whole gang is back at Paul Miller Racing for the 2021 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season.
Madison Snow and Bryan Sellers have returned as full-season drivers in the No. 48 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO. Corey Lewis will join them for the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup events again, with Andrea Caldarelli reprising his role as the fourth driver for the upcoming Rolex 24 At Daytona. The car will run as the No. 1 in the Rolex 24 as the team prepares to defend its GT Daytona (GTD) victory at Daytona International Speedway on Jan. 30-31.
Snow and Sellers have proven a formidable duo, winning the WeatherTech Championship GTD season title driving for Paul Miller Racing in 2018. Along with Lewis, they collected the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup crown last year for points awarded at the four series races six hours or longer.
"We’re so happy to have both Madison and Bryan back for the full season in 2021 as well as Andrea and Corey back with our team," team founder Paul Miller said. "It’s been an absolute pleasure to work with all four of these drivers over the years. We’ve accomplished so much together already; I can’t wait to see what we are able to do in 2021.
"We know that this lineup is strong enough to win, and we proved that in 2018 and again at the Rolex 24 in 2020 and through the rest of the Endurance Cup season. This year, the bar has gone up yet again in the IMSA GTD field and we expect our competition to be operating at a higher level than ever, so that we’ll have to raise our own game in order to compete. But, in addition to the drivers, we have a great crew and a brand-new car from Lamborghini at our disposal to help us fight for race wins and hopefully a title this year."
Four of Snow’s six career IMSA wins have come since he joined PMR in 2016. The 25-year-old from Utah said he thrives in the team’s family atmosphere.
"We will build on our previous seasons together and continue to work hard with a strong driver lineup and a really great crew behind us," Snow said. "The crew has been vastly the same since I joined PMR in 2016, which is a sign of how wonderful it is to be a part of this family Paul Miller has built. All focus right now is on getting another watch and starting our championship campaign strong."
Sellers has 11 wins in his IMSA career, including at least one in nine of the past 10 seasons. The 38-year-old Ohioan is eager to get back to a full-season slate after PMR concentrated primarily on the endurance events in 2020.
"It’s difficult to find the right words to explain the level of excitement I have returning for a full season with Madison," said Sellers. "We have had a lot of success as a pairing and I am hoping that we will be able to continue to grow and build on that.
"This season looks like it’s shaping up to be the most difficult in GTD history. There have been a lot of really great driver and team combinations announced and released. But this is exactly what you want and need as a racing team. You want to prove yourself up against the best in the business. I am sure we will have to continue to grow as a program, but we are looking forward to the challenge."
Magnus with Archangel Announces Lineup for No. 44 Acura
Magnus with Archangel announced completion of the driver lineup that will compete in the No. 44 Acura NSX GT3 Evo at the Rolex 24. Joining full-season drivers John Potter and Andy Lally for all the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup rounds will be Spencer Pumpelly, while two-time defending GT Daytona (GTD) champion Mario Farnbacher comes aboard for the season-opening Rolex 24.
Pumpelly, with 19 career IMSA wins, co-drove with Potter and Lally for a pair of podium finishes last year – finishing second in GTD at the Rolex 24 and third at the Motul Petit Le Mans. This month’s Rolex 24 will mark a milestone as the 48-year-old Virginian chases his third win in the iconic race.
"This will be my 20th Rolex 24 as a driver and I’m glad to be contesting it with Andy and John, both good friends who I have known for years," Pumpelly said. "I’m also looking forward to working with Mario Farnbacher at Daytona. He brings a wealth of experience in the NSX and will be a big help in getting us tuned in on some of the subtleties of the new car."
"The Rolex 24 always involves a little luck, but we are going in well prepared with one of the best teams in the business supporting us. I’m looking forward to the race with confidence in what the guys are going to be putting on track."
Farnbacher, who has nine wins in an IMSA career that debuted in 2012, drove the past three seasons with Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian’s Acura GTD team that was halted when the team took on a Daytona Prototype international (DPi) program. The 28-year-old German earned four wins in the Acura on his way to winning the 2019 and 2020 class championships.
"This is a new chapter for me after being with Meyer Shank Racing for the last three years," said Farnbacher, who will make his ninth consecutive Rolex 24 start. "I’m really looking forward to driving with Magnus with Archangel. I know some of the guys personally, and they are a great group."
"They’ve won at this circuit before and are familiar with how everything goes. We’ve got a good package to win a 24-hour race. We have a good car in the Acura NSX GT3 Evo. I’m looking forward to continuing my relationship with Honda, Acura and Honda HPD. I can’t wait to get everything started."
Pigot Replaces Fraga in No. 74 Riley Motorsports LMP3 for Rolex 24
Riley Motorsports has named Spencer Pigot as a co-driver in its No. 74 Le Mans Prototype 3 (LMP3) entry for the Rolex 24 At Daytona to replace Felipe Fraga, who cannot leave his native Brazil due to a COVID-related travel issue.
Pigot will team with the previously announced trio of Gar Robinson, Scott Andrews and Oliver Askew in the Ligier JS P320 for the 24-hour race. Since the Rolex 24 does not award points toward the LMP3 championship, Fraga will still be able to compete for the title with full-season teammate Robinson.
"I’ve known Spencer for a while now and it will be great to have him with us for Daytona," said Bill Riley, the team principal. "It’s a shame that Felipe will not be able to join us, but we are excited to continue our pursuit for the LMP3 championship with him in Sebring."
Pigot came up through the open-wheel ranks, spending most of the last five seasons in the IndyCar Series. Along the way he has made 15 career IMSA starts, all but one in a Prototype. He has three podium finishes, most recently a runner-up result last year in a Le Mans Prototype 2. When Robinson was younger, Pigot was one of his instructors at the Skip Barber Racing School.
"I’m really looking forward to joining Riley Motorsports for the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona," said Pigot. "The team has such a successful history at this event and hopefully we can add another victory. I haven’t driven the LMP3 car before, so it will be an exciting challenge. As always, it’s going to be a very difficult race, but I will have great teammates in Gar, Oliver and Scott, and I’m confident that we will be able to fight for a Rolex."