Former Verizon IndyCar Series team owners Jimmy Vasser and James ‘Sulli’ Sullivan will return to the series in 2018 after entering into a partnership with Dale Coyne to form a new team called Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan.
The new partnership will see four time CART champion Sebastien Bourdais drive the No.18 Dale Coyne W/ Vasser Sullivan for the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season.
Starting with the Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg where Bourdais is the defending race winner he will have primary sponsorship from SealMaster who will serve as primary sponsor to the No.18 for nine of the 17 races in 2018 including the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil in May.
Vasser and Sullivan will be reunited with Bourdais for the first time since 2016 when Bourdais competed in the Verizon IndyCar Series with KVSH Racing which was a partnership between Jimmy Vasser, James Sullivan and Kevin Kalkhoven.
Speaking about the formation of the new team, Dale Coyne who will continue to run the No.19 Honda as Dale Coyne Racing commented by saying:
When Jimmy, Sulli and I met to discuss creating this partnership, it was very enticing. “They’ve had a lot of success in their previous years in IndyCar, and I’m thrilled to have them as partners. It’s an opportunity I couldn’t turn down as we move forward with this program. The future is bright, and we’re excited to get the season going with SealMaster onboard as a co-primary sponsor. Hopefully we can continue the success Jimmy and Sulli have had, and that we’ve had with Sebastien.
Jimmy Vasser commented on the news by saying:
First I want to acknowledge Kevin Kalkhoven, who gave both Sulli and myself the forum to be where we are today. After extensive talks, I am very pleased and proud to say that we will be continuing that legacy.
“I took a year off from competition for the first time in many years and realized how much I missed it. This is the next chapter in my racing career, so I want to say thank you to Sulli, Dale, SealMaster, our sponsors and Sebastien. With their support we are focused on re-creating our prior success and again challenging for wins in 2018.
Franchise Director of SealMaster, the world’s leading manufacturer of pavement sealer, maintenance equipment, Rick Simon commented by saying:
Sebastien Bourdais is one of the most successful open-wheel drivers in the sport. He embodies SealMaster’s championship spirit. “The newly formed team brings together owners and members with powerful synergy and the highest standards for achievement. We operate the same way and share the same values so we feel Sebastien and the team will be great brand ambassadors.”
A delighted James Sulli Sullivan commented on the news by saying:
First, it’s great to be back. “We took a step back last year to evaluate and construct our next chapter, and both Jimmy and I, after many discussions with Dale, all came to the conclusion that this was the right time and opportunity to move this partnership forward.
“Most importantly, having SealMaster, a world-class brand, on board to support the new team gives us big momentum out of the gate. With Sebastien (Bourdais) driving, the engineering staff and the crew that Dale has assembled, we are positioned for a banner year.
Sebastien Bourdais is looking forward to re-uniting with Jimmy Vasser and Sulli. The Frenchman commented by saying:
I want to thank Dale Coyne, Jimmy Vasser and Sulli for the opportunity to move forward with this program that’s been in the works for over a year. “Over the last few years we’ve all captured poles and won races together. This is a team that started small, but what we needed, and now have collectively, is a consistent program, from top-to-bottom that can compete at the highest level and contend for a championship. I am very excited to get in this SealMaster car and represent such a great company.
The opening race of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season, the Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg takes place from March 9-11.