Michel Jourdain Jr. Joins Lowe's Fernandez Racing
Mexican Driving Talent Named as Third Driver
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (June 5, 2008) -- Lowe's Fernandez Racing today announced that open-wheel and NASCAR talent Michel Jourdain Jr. has been signed as a third driver for the team in the American Le Mans Series. Jourdain will join long-time friends and fellow countrymen Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz behind the wheel of the #15 Lowe's Acura ARX LMP2 prototype beginning with the renowned 1,000-mile/10-hour Petit Le Mans endurance classic on October 4. He will also drive for the team in the 2009 Twelve Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans.
"I have known Michel a long time," noted Fernandez. "His father used to organize the Marlboro Cup in Mexico which was, in my days in the '80s, the best national series, and he was one of the first to help me with sponsorship. So I have known Michel since he was young and that carried through our days in Champ Cars together. We have always kept up a good relationship, have always tried to help each other and always looked for an opportunity to do something together. For one reason or another, that wasn't possible until now.
"After the Twelve Hours of Sebring this year, we realized that we needed a third driver to help Luis and me. I gave Michel a call and the timing was right to start working with him. He is very experienced and very talented, and he is one of the most well-known and successful drivers in my homeland. Lowe's will be opening stores in Mexico next year and to have Michel join the team is a great addition to our program on and off the track. I am looking forward to the three of us working together. Michel understands that we would like to have him with us on a more regular basis, but at least this is a start and you never know what can happen from here."
"This is fantastic," said Jourdain. "Since Adrian started Fernandez Racing back in 2000, we have always talked about trying to do something together and finally it happened. Adrian and Luis are two of my best friends in and out of racing so I am really happy to be working with them.
"I admire what Adrian and Tom [Anderson, co-owner and managing director] have done together with Fernandez Racing. I think this is one of the best racing operations in the world and they have put together a great group of people. I am also looking forward to working with John [Ward, race engineer]. Like him, everyone on this team is not only extremely talented at what they do but they are great people as well which is also important to me.
"I really appreciate the opportunity that Adrian and Tom are giving me, and have to thank Lowe's and Acura. I hope to help win some races for them."
Jourdain will have his first look at the intricacies of the #15 Lowe's Acura this coming Monday in a test with the team at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, on June 9. Fernandez and Diaz will also take part in the two-day outing.
"Michel and I have a very good relationship," added Diaz. "Actually, we studied at the same school growing up. I consider him to be one of the best Latin American drivers. He is a great addition to our program. I think he will bring a lot of good things with his experience and we will become a stronger team. I am really happy and looking forward to working with Michel."