Juan Pablo Montoya Considers Sports Car Racing
Long celebrated open-wheel racing superstar Juan Pablo Montoya teased fans recently after taking his first laps behind the wheel of a Ferrari 488 GTE car. At an IMSA-sanctioned test at Sebring, Montoya completed 10 test laps in Ferrari's GT Le Mans contender. The two-time Indianapolis 500 winner turned a best lap of 2:01.414, just 3 seconds slower than Sebastien Bourdais who set the pace in a Ford GT at the Rolex 24.
The event is making the news because it was Montoya's first experience in a GT car. "It’s fun," Montoya said after the run. "It’s different. I ran like 4-8 laps just to get the hang of it. I’m probably going to get back in a little bit later.” “A prototype drives more like an open-wheel car, "he went on to say. "This is very different. There’s a lot of pitch movement with the cars. It’s very easy to get it wrong. "
When asked in an interview about a full-time switch to sports cars, Montoya said "time will tell." Risi Team Manager Dave Sims said Montoya won't be in next month's Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. Montoya is still under contract with Team Penske and will be staying with Formula One for the time being.
Fans everywhere are hoping he makes the switch. With a career full of championship wins dating back to 1998 this veteran racer has a lot to bring to the track. Even as a rookie Montoya grabbed headlines by winning the North American open-wheel CART Championship title with his first attempt. Montoya is known for crossing between race types, having driven CART, Formula One, IRL, IndyCar, NASCAR, and Grand-Am. He is currently slated to drive for Penske at the 2017 Indianapolis 500.