More birthdays: Aldo Andretti, Bourdais, Hawksworth, Bachelart, Minassian, Leitzinger, Liddell

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February 28 marks a busy day for birthdays beyond Mario Andretti, who turns 75 today. Mario’s twin brother Aldo – often overlooked – also turns 75 today.

Two current members of the Verizon IndyCar Series grid have their birthdays today, as well.

Sebastien Bourdais, the four-time Champ Car champion and current driver of the No. 11 Hydroxycut Mistic KVSH Racing Chevrolet, turns 36. He’ll be back for his second season with KVSH Racing this year, and his 11th overall in North America since coming over as a then-24-year-old rookie in 2003.

Speaking of 24-year-olds, that’s how old Jack Hawksworth turns today. The Englishman enters his fourth season in North America, and second in IndyCar, now driving the No. 41 ABC Supply Co. Honda for A.J. Foyt Enterprises. Hawksworth was presented with a birthday cake adorned with the ABC Supply Co. Wisconsin 250 at Milwaukee IndyFest Presented by the Metro Milwaukee Honda Dealers logo during the premiere of “Focus” last night.

Two former IndyCar drivers who have since moved into other arenas of the sport have birthdays today, as well.

Eric Bachelart, a two-time Indianapolis 500 starter and former Indy Lights champion who went on to have a successful career as team owner of Conquest Racing, turns 54 today. Conquest most recently ran the development project of the new Dallara IL15 Indy Lights chassis.

Bourdais’ countryman Nicolas Minassian, who achieved some success in Formula 3000 and briefly drove for Target Chip Ganassi Racing before embarking on a highly successful sports car career, turns 42. The Frenchman is expected to continue with SMP Racing, as that team shifts ts focus from the FIA World Endurance Championship to the European Le Mans Series in 2015.

One of North America’s more underrated sports car drivers, Pennsylvania native Butch Leitzinger, also has his birthday today – he turns 46. Leitzinger will be in the No. 20 Bentley Team Dyson Racing Bentley Continental GT3 in the Pirelli World Challenge this season.

Scottish sports car ace Robin Liddell also has a birthday today – he’s now 41 – and drives for Stevenson Motorsports in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge.

We wish them all happy birthdays.

Supercross: Enzo Lopes will race with ClubMX in 2024

Lopes ClubMX 2024
Feld Motor Sports/MX Sports Pro Racing/Align Media

Coming off his best Supercross season to date, Enzo Lopes has re-signed with Muc-Off / ClubMX Yamaha and will race for the team in 2024. The deal is for Supercross only.

Enzo Lopes won his heat race in Denver and finished fourth in the Main. – Feld Motor Sports

Lopes debuted in the Supercross series in 2019 on a Suzuki and scored his first top-10 finishes in his last two starts of that season. Showing consistent improvement, he earned six top-10s in eight Main events the following year and finished fifth in the 250 East standings. In 2022, he scored his first top-five at Daytona and finished in the top five in points again.

“I am happy to be returning to ClubMX for another season,” Lopes said in a press release. “It is like family to me there and that is very important. Although I had many options, staying where I am makes the most sense for many reasons. The bikes are great, the people are great, the tracks are amazing, and I am surrounded by people that care about me. We all want to win and together we will get there.”

While he improved his season-best performance by only one position this year, it was nevertheless a breakout season. Lopes barely missed the podium three times in 2023 with fourth-place finishes at San Diego, Seattle, and Denver.

His strong performance him rumored to be speaking with factory teams.

“We could see the growth from Enzo every time he gets on the bike,” said team owner Brandon Haas. “We all knew it was just a matter of time before he would be noticed by everyone, and we are proud of him on many levels. He had some heat race wins and qualified fastest at three events this season. It would be hard not to be noticed going that fast. He had a big decision to make and we are glad he chose to stay with us at ClubMX.”

Lopes had three podium finishes in heat races this year, including a win preceding his fourth-place finish in Denver.

Lopes will join Jeremy Martin, Phil Nicoletti and Garrett Marchbanks, who announced a two-year extension with the team in January, at the ClubMX team.