INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Monday, July 24, 2006) -- Max Papis, the versatile driver of open-wheel and sports-car racing, has been hired to drive the ...
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Monday, July 24, 2006) -- Max Papis, the versatile driver of open-wheel and sports-car racing, has been hired to drive the #39 Cheever Racing/Crown Royal Daytona Prototype, along with Christian Fittipaldi, in the Grand American Rolex Sports Car series race at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama this weekend.
The news comes just days after the birth of Max and his wife Tatiana's son Marco Fittipaldi Papis, who was born Friday, July 21 at South Miami Hospital.
"I am glad to be back in the Grand-Am series," said Papis, who is a two-time Rolex 24 at Daytona winner and a 2004 Grand-Am Series champion. "It will be the first time I have teamed with Christian, who I have known since I was 14 years old, so it will be like a family reunion. It is a great way to celebrate the birth of my kid, Marco. I will work very hard to help bring success to the Cheever organization."
Papis also drove for Cheever Racing this year at the Indianapolis 500, finishing 14th.
"Max did a great job for us at Indy," said Cheever. "With his experience in the Grand-Am Series he will be a great pairing with Christian."
A native of Como, Italy, Papis moved up the ladder of European formulas during his late teens and early 20s before finding a Formula One test ride with Lotus and Honda in 1994. The following year, he competed in seven Formula One races with Arrows.
In 1996, Papis posted three wins in IMSA World Sports Car, then joined Championship Auto Racing Teams, where he won three races in five years. Since then, Papis has been one of the top competitors in American sports-car racing. He posted an overall win at the 24 Hours of Daytona in 2002, a Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series championship in 2004, and class wins at the 12 Hours of Sebring and 24 Hours of Daytona and two runner-up finishes at the 24 Hours of LeMans. Papis also drives in the Crown Royal IROC Series and does road course testing in NASCAR.