Chip Ganassi Racing’s Cadillac prototype programme in the IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship and the FIA World Endurance programme is no different to the team’s Ford GT programme in the same championships last decade, according to Chip Gansssi.
Speaking to MotorsportWeek.com before the 24 Hours of Daytona last weekend, Ganassi said, “There’s no difference, no difference. It’s still racing. You have competitors, it’s very close and you’re trying to get the most out of your car, all the time.
“It’s the same. I don’t notice any difference in our cars other than we don’t get passed by 10 to 12 cars all night long.”
Ganassi’s eponymous team runs the Cadillac V-Series.R, as a factory programme, in both major sportscar championships globally, using drivers from the Cadillac factory pool, plus the team’s contracted drivers, such as Scott Dixon and Alex Palou.
Last decade, Chip Ganassi Racing ran the Ford GT factory programme for the Blue Oval, also racing in both championships with the GT car. The team won the 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans with Joey Hand, Dirk Muller, and Sebastien Bourdais behind the wheel at various points during the race.
The team is now heading into the second year of racing the Cadillac in GTP and WEC’s Hypercar class. However, Ganassi is taking a practical approach when it comes to taking learnings from last year into this year.
“I think it’s taking the learnings that we’ve learnt over 19 years, and not just last year,” he said.
“We’re approaching it like any other race. You gotta run all night. You gotta have a clean race. You gotta have your car in one piece. Nothing hanging off. Be there in 23 hours and see what happens.”
However, the Chip Ganassi Racing-run Cadillac retired partway through the event, with what the team said was a “powertrain malfunction”.
And, naturally, Ganassi has one objective going forward.
“Winning. Just winning,” he said, evoking his famous ‘I like winners’ stance. When asked how his team can go about that compared to last year, when they struggled in comparison to the other Cadillac factory team, Action Express, Ganassi was similarly bullish.
“I think last year we were getting our arms around the hybrid system more,” said the American.
And I think this year, we’ve had a little opportunity to work on the car a little bit. We’ve worked on the handling, worked on the things that we’re good at.”
The team’s next race with the Cadillac V-Series.R is the season opener for the WEC, the 1812km of Qatar, on Saturday 3rd March.