Reigning Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will be joining the Ganassi/Lexus team for the first time in 2008 - and looking to pull off a rare feat of winning the 12 Hours of Sebring (class win), the Indianapolis 500 and the Rolex 24 in the...
Reigning Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will be joining the Ganassi/Lexus team for the first time in 2008 - and looking to pull off a rare feat of winning the 12 Hours of Sebring (class win), the Indianapolis 500 and the Rolex 24 in the span of less than a year. He'll co-drive the #01 TELMEX/Lexus with Scott Pruett, Juan Montoya and Memo Rojas for this year's 24-hour event.
Moderator: Your thoughts on having the chance to win the Indianapolis 500 and then coming here with a chance to win the Rolex 24 back-to-back?
Dario Franchitti: This will be my third Rolex 24 and I think that I'm lucky enough to be in a car that has a very good chance. With this team and this package, it's definitely my best shot yet. The car is certainly fast enough to win the race. Now we just need to do all the right things. I'm really looking forward to it. Last year was a good year with the Indy 500 and the IRL championship, as well as winning our class at Sebring, so if we could add the 24 hours to that, it would be pretty amazing.
Moderator: Few drivers ever get a chance to even race in all of those events, let alone win them.
Dario Franchitti: I'm very fortunate. Sebring is one of the classics, obviously the Indianapolis 500 is still one of the biggest races in the world and now the Rolex 24. Slowly, but surely I'm getting to run all the races I really want to do. I've got the '24' this month and next month it's my first Daytona 500.
Moderator: Dario, you've been racing open-wheel in the U.S. since 1997, but it seems like during that time, you were always racing wheel-to-wheel against the Ganassi team, now you're teammates, tell us about the switch.
Dario Franchitti: Literally, since the first day I came over here, I've been fighting against the Chip Ganassi team. So I admit, the first time I put on the Target uniform it felt really weirdt. I felt like a Glasgow Celtic back in Scotland putting on a Glasgow Ranger shirt. It was a different feeling, but I admired the team a lot and I know how difficult they are to beat, so I'm really happy to be a part of this team. I think they'll do a great job for me.
Moderator: And looking back to 1999, you actually tied for the CART title with your co-driver in the #01 car, Juan Montoya. Did you ever imagine that happening?
Dario Franchitti: (Laughing) It was going to happen at some point where Juan and I were going to eventually end up as teammates. We've known each other for a long, long time. I'm really happy to be racing with him, not only here at Daytona, but for the whole Cup season. He's a good guy and I'm glad to have him as a teammate rather than a competitor.