Racing Team Nederland joins IMSA for endurance rounds

Racing Team Nederland will contest the enduro rounds of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship next season after taking title honours in this year's FIA World Endurance Championship.

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RTN, which claimed the Pro/Am LMP2 crown in the 2021 WEC, will contest the four long-distance races that make up the Michelin-sponsored Endurance Cup with an Oreca 07-Gibson again run by the French TDS Racing squad.

Team boss Frits van Eerd, whose Jumbo supermarket chain is a personal sponsor of Max Verstappen, will be partnered by regular teammate Giedo van der Garde and Dylan Murry, son of sportscar stalwart David, at the Daytona, Sebring, Watkins Glen and Road Atlanta enduros.

They will be joined for January's Rolex 24 at Daytona by Dutch IndyCar driver Rinus VeeKay, a race winner with Ed Carpenter Racing this year who is also sponsored by van Eerd.

Van Eerd, who won the WEC title alone after teammates van der Garde and Job van Uitert missed the Monza round due to testing positive for COVID, has been open about his aspiration to race in IMSA and took the team to compete at Daytona earlier this year.

"Since we won the world title in 2021, the timing of this new challenge is perfect," he said.

"I have loved racing in the wonderful WEC, but I have always said that at some point I would like to take RTN to IMSA as well.

"I studied in the USA and attended IMSA races back then, so, to now do these four famous IMSA races is really a dream come true for me.”

Van Eerd explained that he wanted an American driver in a team which has traditionally been all-Dutch.

“We race in America now, so as our silver-ranked driver I wanted a young American talent on the team," he said. "Dylan is fast and he also already knows all the circuits that we will race on next year."

Murry, 20, is moving up from IMSA's LMP3 class, in which he finished third this year aboard a Riley Motorsport-run Ligier.

VeeKay explained that it has "always been my dream to one day race together with Frits, who has been my loyal sponsor for many years."

The 21-year-old made his IMSA debut at Daytona last year driving for the DragonSpeed LMP2 team.

RTN is leaving the WEC after three seasons. It started with a Dallara P217 run by the Dutch DayVtec squad in the 2018/19 superseason before swapping to an Oreca and TDS for 2019/20.

It claimed an LMP2 class victory at the Fuji in 2019 with van Eerd, van der Garde and Nyck de Vries before the advent of the Pro/Am class for line-ups including a bronze-rated driver.

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