Chip Ganassi Racing officially announced today that Tony Kanaan will join the team for the 2014 season joining Charlie Kimball as well as Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti for a 4 car assault. The team will now represent 6 Indianapolis wins and 7 series titles between Kanaan, Franchitti and Dixon.
“We’ve been trying to get together for a long time, and we finally did it,” said Ganassi. “It’s a great opportunity for our team, and I’m glad to have my new pal with us.”
“I thank NTT DATA and Chip’s organization for giving me one more chance,” said Kanaan. “I’m excited, and it’s a special day for me and a special day for my family. Coming back to with Dario (Franchitti) again and (Scott) Dixon and Charlie (Kimball) will be a blast. I’ve been with a four-car team organization in the past, and it was extremely successful. I’m looking forward to the future, and it’s great news for INDYCAR. We’ll have a hell of a battle next year.”
The car will be sponsored by NTT Data, which also sponsored Ryan Briscoe in a 4th entry for the Indianapolis 500.
Kanaan has been in a fight to stay in IndyCar for the last 3 years, when he was not retained at Andretti Autosport. He inked a deal with Gil de Ferran’s team, but the team folded shortly before the season started and he was rescued by KV Racing less than a week before the season opener in 2011. Since then, he has struggled to find sponsorship, but he still soldiered on and did what he had to do to remain competitive.
“I wanted to be in the best teams with the best guys, who have been beating me forever. I thought about it every single day,” said Kanaan. I think I proved over the last three years how hard I had to work to keep going after everything we’ve won. Opportunities are there. It’s up to you to take everything out of it and make the best of it.”
Also, after a long standing relationship with Honda, Chip Ganassi Racing has signed with Chevrolet for 2014 and beyond, making it Chevy all across the board for Ganassi (Ganassi’s NASCAR Sprint Cup series program has been with Chevrolet since 2010).
“This thing happened pretty quick with Chevrolet. They have shown they have a great product, and we wanted to be a part of it. It’s something for our team to consolidate our manufacturers and be part of a winning effort.