American teams, drivers star at Le Mans 2016

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The American assault on the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year was a big one, and a good one.

The obvious triumphs come in the GTE classes. Ford, as noted, dominated the GTE-Pro proceedings with first, third and fourth in class in the new GT. Risi Competizione made it an all-American entered team sweep of the top three as they came second with its Ferrari 488 GTE.

Then there’s Scuderia Corsa, which won in GTE-Am with NBCSN IndyCar analyst Townsend Bell, Bill Sweedler and Jeff Segal.

Gustavo Menezes won in LMP2, as part of the lineup that finished fifth overall in the No. 36 Signatech Alpine A460 Nissan.

Here’s the American teams/drivers overall results at Le Mans:

LMP2

  • 5 (LMP2, 1). 36-Menezes (USA)/Richelmi/Lapierre, Signatech Alpine A460 Nissan
  • 14 (LMP2, 9). 49-Pew (USA)/Negri (USA)/Vanthoor, Michael Shank Racing (USA) Ligier JS P2 Honda
  • 16 (LMP2, 11). 30-Brown (USA)/Sharp (USA)/van Overbeek (USA), Tequila Patron ESM (USA), Ligier JS P2 Nissan
  • 22 (LMP2, 13). 40-Krohn (USA)/Jonsson/Barbosa, Krohn Racing (USA) Ligier JS P2 Nissan
  • 34 (LMP2, 15). 48-Keating (USA)/Bleekemolen/Goossens, Murphy Prototypes Oreca 03R Nissan
  • 42 (LMP2, 16). 31-Dalziel/Derani/Cumming, Tequila Patron ESM (USA), Ligier JS P2 Nissan
  • R (LMP2, 22). 35-Cheng (USA)/Tung/Panciatici, Baxi DC Racing Alpine A460 Nissan

GTE-Pro

  • 18 (GTE-Pro, 1). 68-Hand (USA)/Mueller/Bourdais, Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (USA) Ford GT
  • 19 (GTE-Pro, 2). 82-Fisichella/Vilander/Malucelli, Risi Competizione (USA) Ferrari 488 GTE
  • 20 (GTE-Pro, 3). 69-Briscoe/Westbrook/Dixon, Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (USA) Ford GT
  • 21 (GTE-Pro, 4). 66-Pla/Mucke/B. Johnson (USA), Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK (USA) Ford GT
  • 25 (GTE-Pro, 7). 63-Magnussen/Garcia/R. Taylor (USA), Corvette Racing (USA) Corvette C7.R
  • 40 (GTE-Pro, 9). 67-Franchitti/Priaulx/Tincknell, Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK (USA) Ford GT
  • R (GTE-Pro, 10). 64-Gavin/Milner (USA)/J. Taylor (USA), Corvette Racing (USA) Corvette C7.R

GTE-Am

  • 26 (GTE-Am, 1). 62-T. Bell (USA)/Sweedler (USA)/Segal (USA), Scuderia Corsa (USA) Ferrari F458 Italia
  • 28 (GTE-Am, 3). 88-Al Qubaisi/DHH/P. Long (USA), Abu Dhabi Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR
  • 39 (GTE-Am, 9). 57-O’Connell (USA)/Bryant/Patterson (USA), Team AAI Corvette C7.R
  • R (GTE-Am, 13). 89-MacNeil (USA)/L. Keen (USA)/M. Miller (USA), Proton Competition Porsche 911 RSR

Three-time W Series champ Jamie Chadwick joining Andretti in Indy NXT Series for 2023

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Jamie Chadwick, the three-time W Series champion, will drive for Andretti Autosport in the Indy NXT Series next season.

Chadwick will make her debut in an American racing series in March, driving the No. 28 for Andretti Autosport with sponsorship from DHL. The 24-year-old will become the first female driver in 13 years to compete full time in the Indy NXT championship.

Chadwick joined the female free-to-enter W Series in its inaugural 2019 season, winning two races and the first of three consecutive championships. She has been a reserve driver for the Williams Formula One team and will continue in that role in 2023. She also has driven in the Extreme E Series.

Despite her success, Chadwick hasn’t landed a bigger ride in F3 or F2, and her break didn’t come until Michael Andretti contacted her and offered a test in an Indy NXT car.

The final three races of this year’s W Series schedule were canceled when funding fell through, but Chadwick still believes the all-female series was the right path for her.

“W Series has always been and will continue to be an opportunity to be racing for every female driver, so for my side, I looked at it while perhaps I would have liked to step up maybe earlier, at the same time being able to have that chance to race, get that experience, have that development, seat time… I was constantly learning,” Chadwick told The Associated Press.

“In that sense, I wasn’t frustrated at all. But on the flip side of it, now I’ve had that experience testing in the United States in Indy NXT and this is something I’m really excited about.”

Chadwick also is expected to have an enhanced role as a development driver next season with Williams, which chose American driver Logan Sargeant to fill its open seat on next year’s F1 grid.

“Andretti Autosport is proud to be supporting Jamie alongside DHL,” said Michael Andretti. “Jamie’s successful career speaks for itself, but Indy NXT gives Jamie the opportunity to continue her development in a new type of racing.

“We’ve turned out five Indy NXT champions over the years and look forward to continuing our role in developing new talent.”

Indy NXT is the new name of the rebranded Indy Lights Series, the final step on the ladder system before IndyCar.

Andretti will field two drivers next season in IndyCar that were developed in Indy NXT: Kyle Kirkwood, the 2021 champion, will return to Andretti after one season in IndyCar driving for A.J. Foyt Racing, and Devlin DeFrancesco is back for a second season.

Chadwick will be teammates in Indy NXT with Hunter McElrea and Louis Foster. She becomes Andretti’s second full-time female driver alongside Catie Munnings, who competes for Andretti United in the Extreme E Series.