Two of the Verizon IndyCar Series most successful team owners will be honored at separate events this week as they are inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.
Chip Ganassi who set up his Chip Ganassi Racing IndyCar team in 1990 and since than his team have won 11 IndyCar Series championships and has taken 101 Verizon IndyCar Series victories in that time.
Ganassi will be inducted later today at an event at The Shores Resort and Spa in Daytona Beach. Ganassi’s is the reigning Verizon IndyCar Series championship car owner as Scott Dixon claimed his fourth IndyCar title last season following a count-back with Juan Pablo Montoya.
Ganassi is the car owner in history to win the LeMans 24 Hours, the Indianapolis 500, the Daytona 500, the Brickyard 400, the 12 hours of Sebring and the Rolex 24 Hour at Daytona.
Prior to becoming one of the legendary and most successful team owners in IndyCar Series history Chip competed in IndyCar making 27 starts with a best result of second place in Cleveland in 1984. Ganassi also competed in the Indianapolis 500 five times with a best finish of 8th place in 1983.
Former Formula One champion and IndyCar legend Mario Andretti commented by saying:
I’ve known Chip since he was driving Formula Fords in the early 80s. As he transitioned to team ownership, the motorsports world watched him reach the pinnacle of the sport by winning in all the major categories that he entered. In my eyes, that makes him an icon. His contributions to our sport are immense. He’s a tremendous competitor and also a great friend.
Jim Campball US VP of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports with General Motors who supply Chip Ganassi Racing’s four teams in the Verizon IndyCar Series commented by saying:
Chip is a racer, a championship team owner, and importantly, he’s a partner and friend of Chevrolet. He leads his team from competitive and business perspectives. The longevity of his business along with dozens of championships and marquee race wins is impressive. He has an incredible ability to attract talent and put people in the right positions to create team chemistry with a sole focus on winning. It’s a lot more fun racing with Chip Ganassi than it is against him.
Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion and driver of the No.9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Team Chevrolet Scott Dixon commented by saying:
It’s impressive what Chip has been able to accomplish in such a short amount of time. He started his team in the early 90s and has grown it across multiple series. Just this month he added another big win to the list with a historic victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. I love Chip’s competitive nature and I’m proud to have driven for the same team basically my entire career. This honor is well deserved and I hope we get to share many more trips to victory lane together in the future.
Legendary IndyCar team owner AJ Foyt says that Chip is a better owner than he was a driver saying:
Chip’s been a lot better owner than he was a driver. Seriously though, he’s been good for racing and a strong supporter of the sport. His teams have won the major races in INDYCAR and NASCAR so I think he deserves to be in there.
NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France commented by saying:
Chip Ganassi has had a positive impact on our sport for decades, as both a driver and owner, and on behalf of the entire NASCAR family we would like to congratulate him on being inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame. As one of our most innovative and forward-thinking owners, Chip is a great ambassador and is doing a fantastic job developing one of NASCAR’s rising stars in Kyle Larson. We thank him for his commitment to NASCAR and wish him and his team continued success following this tremendous honor.
Jim France, IMSA and International Speedway Corporation Chairman commented by saying:
It’s appropriate that the first Motorsports Hall of Fame of America induction ceremony in Daytona Beach includes Chip Ganassi. Chip’s teams have won the Rolex 24 At Daytona six times and the Daytona 500 in 2010 alongside all of the big races over the years – Charlotte, Sebring, Indianapolis and just a couple of weeks ago at Le Mans. Add to that his six Daytona Prototype championships and 11 INDYCAR championships and it’s clear that Chip has plenty of credentials to be called a ‘Hall of Famer.’ Congratulations, Chip, on a fantastic career so far and here’s to many more years of success.
Verizon IndyCar Series legend, former Ganassi driver and current driver coach with the team Dario Franchitti commented by saying:
It’s great to see Chip being honored. It’s well deserved. His accomplishments are really second to none. Winning the Daytona 500, Indy 500, Rolex 24, Sebring, Brickyard and now Le Mans, is simply incredible. As a driver, you want to drive for Chip because he gives the team everything it needs to do the job, and expects results. It’s been an absolute pleasure to drive for him.
NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon commented by saying:
Chip is a great businessman and he is the definition of a racer. It doesn’t matter what series, whether it’s the Indianapolis 500 or the Brickyard 400, whether it’s the Daytona 500 or the 24 Hours of Daytona, or Le Mans, Chip’s teams will be battling for the win. It takes a great leader to accomplish the impressive victory resume he has. Chip is a very deserving honoree.
Joey Hand commented by saying:
Ever since I was a kid racing in the lower levels of open-wheel, I would watch Chip Ganassi and his teams and always said ‘I want to drive for him one day’. Luckily for me that dream came true and I’m a Chip Ganassi Racing driver! We all know that Chip likes winners and he has a knack for picking out winners. The thing about Chip is he gives all his people, including his drivers, what they need to win, and many times, the words of wisdom to go out and make it happen. It’s amazing to me how Chip has assembled so many great people across so many different series and attained championships. There is a reason why he is one of the most famous names in racing and I am very proud to be one of his drivers! He absolutely deserves to be inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America!
Managing Director of Chip Ganassi Racing Mike Hull commented by saying:
Chip Ganassi has taught us that the mere mortal’s horizontal landscape is driven to a supersonic vertical climb when everyone in the room is reminded to act as one. His demeanor of a daily defined priority helps us climb as one. The amazing thing is that it’s usually accomplished by just one well-placed Chip sentence.
Driver of the No.10 NTT DATA Chevrolet Tony Kanaan commented on the news by saying:
You can’t think of Indy car racing without Chip’s name and his organization coming to mind. He has been a pioneer for the whole world of motorsports and he has turned his organization into such a powerhouse across so many different series. I’ve had the pleasure of watching Chip’s team grow into what it is today over the years and it’s nothing short of impressive. It’s really been an honor to have the opportunity to drive for Chip and I can’t think of anyone more deserving of being inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame.
Charlie Kimball who drives the No.83 Tresiba® Chevrolet commented by saying:
The opportunity to drive for Chip Ganassi has been a dream come true, especially starting in my rookie year of the Verizon IndyCar Series. One of the greatest things about Chip is his competitiveness. He wants to win no matter what and make sure that his teams have the tools to win. The fact that he’s being inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame is a very deserved honor. His accomplishments with winning the Daytona 24 Hours, the Brickyard, and the Indianapolis 500 all in the same year is pretty incredible and then most recently putting a team together to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans. You talk about the crown jewels of racing and none of those conversations happen without Chip Ganassi Racing being brought up.
President of Chip Ganassi Racing Steve Lauletta commented on the news by saying:
Chip’s racing acumen has been well chronicled throughout his illustrious career but what I think is just as impressive is how innovative of a businessman that he is. Just as he understands what it takes to win on the track he also understands better than most what it takes to win off the track by delivering value to his team’s partners. Based on that it’s no surprise that he has been able to cultivate many long-term mutually beneficial partnerships with them. He is deserving of induction into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America at so many levels.
CEO of Verizon IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway parent company Hulman & Company Mark Miles commented by saying:
On behalf of everybody at the Verizon IndyCar Series we’d like to congratulate Chip Ganassi on his induction into the Motorsports Hall of Fame. Chip’s success on the track across so many different racing disciplines is a testament to his leadership as a team owner and the quality and talent of his drivers and personnel. We’re deeply grateful for his enormous contributions to INDYCAR over the years and applaud him for this deserving honor.
Fellow Motorsports Hall of Fame of America inductee Team Penske owner Roger Penske who will receive the Argetsing Award commented by saying:
Congratulations to Chip Ganassi on his induction into the Motorsports Hall of Fame. When you look back at how Chip transitioned from being a driver to a team owner and how he has built his organization into one of the top teams across all levels of motorsports – it certainly is remarkable. From INDYCAR to NASCAR to Sports Car competition, Chip Ganassi Racing has really raised the bar in all of those disciplines and the consistent performance of their teams has been very impressive over the years. We know that drive to succeed starts at the top with Chip. I am proud to call him a friend and a competitor and he is very deserving of this special honor.
The next race on the Verizon IndyCar Series schedule is the Iowa Corn 300 which takes place at the Iowa Speedway next weekend.