Pedro Lamy joins SunTrust Racing ATLANTA -- Max Angelelli, the 2005 Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series co-champion with team owner Wayne Taylor, will share the driving duties of the No. 10 SunTrust Racing Pontiac Riley of Wayne Taylor Racing with a new teammate beginning May 20 at Laguna Seca Raceway near Monterey, Calif.
Former Formula 1 driver and two-time Le Mans European Series (LMES) champion Pedro Lamy of Portugal is slated to co-drive with Angelelli at the remaining Rolex Series events on the 2007 schedule that Angelelli's regular co-driver this season, Jan Magnussen of Denmark, is unable to attend due to conflicting, preexisting driving commitments. Magnussen will be back in the SunTrust Racing machine at selected events later this season.
Lamy, the 35-year-old out of Lisbon who is the first Portuguese driver to score a championship point in F1 competition, was a GT-class champion in the European-based LMES both in 2004 and 2006, and the FIA GT champion in 1998. He also competed as a factory Aston Martin driver in the U.S.-based American Le Mans Series (ALMS) the past two seasons, scoring GT1-class victories in 2006 at Laguna Seca, Lime Rock (Conn.) and Mosport (Canada).
"I think Pedro is going to be an excellent team player and he really fits the whole SunTrust Racing mold," Taylor said. "He's done it all, from Formula 1 to the highest levels of sports car racing, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. He has an excellent track record and Max knows him very well. With our commitment to winning the Rolex Series championship for SunTrust, we want to be sure we put somebody in the car who can keep us on that path. Pedro certainly has all the credentials we are looking for."
With 32 F1 starts to his credit while driving for Team Lotus, Team Mugen and then Team Minardi over the 1993 through 1996 seasons, Lamy made national headlines in his native Portugal by placing sixth at the 1995 Australian Grand Prix. He also captured the German V8 Star Championship series title in 2003, the 1992 German Formula 3 championship, and the 1991 European Formula Opel championship. He's also a two-time winner of the 24 Hours of Nürburgring.
"I'm really pleased to be joining the SunTrust team," Lamy said. "It's a big responsibility because it's a very competitive team in a very competitive series. Hopefully, I can do a good job and help them continue to get the results they need. I've known Max (Angelelli) since we raced together in 1992 and we finally found the right situation to race together again this year. It will be my first time racing in a Daytona Prototype, but I am confident I can get up to speed in a short time. I will have to try to understand the inside of the car, the power and the handling very quickly. Fortunately, my first race will be at Laguna Seca, which is a track I am very familiar with. I won the GT1 class there in October of last year. I look forward to the first race weekend with the SunTrust team and joining Max and Wayne Taylor and their world-class organization."
Angelelli and Magnussen, who are co-driving once again this weekend in the VIR 400 at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Va., have opened the season with consecutive third-place finishes at the Rolex 24 At Daytona (Fla.) and the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City, and a pole qualifying effort and second-place finish late last month at Homestead (Fla.) Miami Speedway. Taylor and four-time NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon also were part of the driver lineup in the Daytona season opener. The SunTrust team currently stands second -- just one point behind the No. 01 entry from Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates -- in the Rolex Series championship heading into the VIR 400 weekend. Magnussen also is a full-time factory Corvette driver in the ALMS, and is competing for the Danish Touring Car Championship. SunTrust Racing.