Driver Lineup Set for Action Express Racing in 2017

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Action Express Racing announced today that the team's championship-winning 2016 driver lineup in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship - featuring Joao Barbosa, Dane Cameron, Eric Curran and Christian Fittipaldi - will return to the team for the 2017 season.

Cameron and Curran, who shared time behind the steering wheel of the No. 31 Whelen Engineering/Team Fox Corvette DP, earned the 2016 driver's championship in the Prototype class.  Barbosa and Fittipaldi, drivers of the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Corvette DP, collected this year's Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup in the Prototype class.  Fittipaldi also earned the TOTAL Pole Award in the Prototype class.

It marks the third consecutive driver's championship for Action Express in the IMSA Prototype class.  Along with this year's championship for Cameron and Curran, in each of the past two years (2014 and 2015) Barbosa and Fittipaldi earned the driver's title.  In addition, Barbosa and Fittipaldi have now earned the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup in the Prototype class in each of the past three years (2014, 2015 and 2016).

Cameron and Curran will return to the driver's seat of the No. 31 race car next season.  Barbosa and Fittipaldi will again be behind the steering wheel of the No. 5 entry in 2017.

Barbosa is the veteran among the four drivers returning to the team in 2017 - having been a full-time driver for Action Express since 2010.  Fittipaldi became a regular with the team in 2013, after joining the team for the season-opening race at Daytona in 2010 and 2011.  Both Cameron and Curran joined Action Express in 2015 and next season will be their third full year with the organization.

"We're looking forward to having our driver lineup return intact next season," said Gary Nelson, team manager for Action Express Racing.  "Joao, Christian, Dane and Eric all work extremely hard at their craft and they all work well together, as well as do an excellent job driving our race cars.  Our style is to make as few changes as possible within our race team, and that starts with our drivers.  Obviously, as we look to next year, that's exactly what we're doing.  And it's not just the continuity we have enjoyed with our core drivers, but with the entire race team including our full-time engineering staff."

Since Action Express Racing was formed in 2010 the team has registered 16 wins in sports car competition, along with three consecutive IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar titles (2014, 2015 and 2016) and three straight North America Endurance Cup championships (2014, 2015 and 2016).  The team has collected a pair of wins in the 24 Hours of Daytona (2010 and 2014), a victory in the 12 Hours of Sebring (2015) and a first-place finish in the Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta (2015).  In addition, the team has collected checkered flags at a number of historic race tracks, including Indianapolis Motor Speedway (2014), Road America (2014, 2015 and 2016) and Watkins Glen International (2012, 2013 and 2016).

En route to this year's driver's title, Cameron and Curran had a pair of wins in the No. 31 Whelen entry at Wisconsin's Road America (Aug. 7) and Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (July 10).  Along with the two wins, the duo recorded three runner-up results and two third-place finishes.

Barbosa and Fittipaldi collected one win in the No. 5 Mustang Sampling race car during the 2016 campaign, along with four runner-up results.

Later this year, the team will announce additional plans for the 2017 IMSA season.  Terms of the agreements with the drivers were not disclosed. 

DRIVER QUOTES

JOAO BARBOSA

"I've been with Action Express Racing since the team started in 2010 - which is a long time.  We have grown together as a team and all our years of working together have definitely paid off as we have had some great success as a race team.  It's very exciting to continue with the race team and I'm looking forward to another season together."

DANE CAMERON

"It's been a great experience working with everyone at Action Express Racing over the past two years and it's exciting to be able keep some continuity with the same drivers and teammates.  I think the relationship between the four drivers has been great over the past two years, and things really started to come together well over the past six months.  Eric and I have learned quite a bit from Joao and Christian as we made the transition to the Prototype class.  And I think that we've done a good job of pushing them, in terms of on-track performance.  I'm looking forward to continuing as a part of this race team and being an instrumental part of the continued development of the team."

ERIC CURRAN

"I'm very excited to be continuing with Action Express Racing in 2017.  It will be my third year with the team.  The last two years have been very successful driving the No. 31 with Dane Cameron.  We've had some good success together and are only getting stronger.  The entire team is getting stronger.  Christian and Joao are great teammates and great partners and I'm glad we'll all be back together again next season."

CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI

"I'm extremely happy to be back with Action Express Racing.  I joined the team for the 24 Hours of Daytona in 2011 and 2012, before full seasons with the team starting in 2013 onwards.  We've had a lot of success during all these years and I'm looking forward to having continued success with the team.  I know where the team came from to where it is now, and it's pretty remarkable.  In a way, because of our success, it's like we've become a bench mark for other teams."

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