IMSA • October 26, 2016
Cameron and Curran continue driving for Whelen Engineering
DENVER, NC (Oct. 25, 2016) - Action Express Racing announced today that the team's championship-winning 2016 driver lineup in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship - featuring Dane Cameron - Eric Curran in the Whelen Engineering car and Joao Barbosa - Christian Fittipaldi in the #5 car - 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 IMSA 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.
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.
Eric Curran and Dane Cameron celebrate their championship along with Christine and Sonny Whelen of title sponsor Whelen Engineering.
"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."
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.
Later this year, the team will announce additional plans for the 2017 IMSA season. Terms of the agreements with the drivers were not disclosed.
"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."
"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 great success together and we 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."
Copyright Whelen Engineering Co, Inc 2017