PATASKALA, Ohio — Less than 48 hours after winning the GTD season title at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Presented by Advance Auto Parts, Meyer Shank Racing announced a few new drivers for two of its 2021 programs. One was to announce Dane Cameron has joined the team to share the full-season driving duties with Oliver Pla starting with the 2021 Rolex 24 At Daytona in January.
The three-time (2014/GTD, 2016, 2019) IMSA WeatherTech Champion brings three years worth of experience with the Acura ARX-05 to the effort as he and MSR join forces in 2021.
Having been a part of the development program for the Acura DPi since its inception in 2018, Cameron has captured three victories onboard the Acura ARX-05 and nine podium finishes. The 2019 season saw Cameron claim the championship title after scoring three victories and four podiums.
“I’m excited to join Meyer Shank Racing and continue my relationship with Acura and HPD,” said Cameron. “I have a lot of experience with the ARX-05 and I know that car inside and out. It’s been really fun to be a part of the development of that car from the very beginning. It’s proven to be a race winner and a championship winner in 2019. I will certainly do my best to bring everything that I’ve learned about this car to the team and make sure that MSR and everyone gets up to speed quickly.”
Cameron and Shank have been IMSA regulars competing in the same events for several seasons, but the tie-up marks the first opportunity for the two to work together as the Ohio-based team once again looks to fight for overall victories in 2021.
“I’ve known Mike (Shank) for quite a while now in IMSA but I haven’t had the opportunity to drive for him,” continued Cameron. “I admire Mike’s passion for the sport. We’ve always talked about putting a program together and it’s cool that we finally worked it out and I’ll get to drive for him next year with the Acura DPi.”
“We’re very excited to have Dane join us next year,” said Shank. “He’s proven that he is a top contender in one of the toughest classes out there. Just like what we (MSR) did with the Acura NSX, he did for the Acura ARX-05. He developed that car and made it a championship winning car. We’re happy to have him onboard and hopefully work towards bringing home another championship for Acura.”
Cameron and Pla are set to drive the full 2021 IMSA season with MSR also having announced AJ Allmendinger’s return to the Rolex 24 for the 15th year.
One of Cameron’s Acura Team Penske teammates, Helio Castroneves, will also be with MSR, although he’ll be competing in six IndyCar races for the team. The team also announced the return of Jack Harvey for the 2021 season behind the wheel of the No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM IndyCar for the full 17-race campaign.
Castroneves will run six races in the No. 06 MSR IndyCar entry — the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park, Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course (August 14), The Grand Prix of Portland and the season-ending race at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
The expanded program comes just one month after MSR announced its partnership with Liberty Media Corporation which had made a minority investment in the team, which is attributed to the Formula One Group. MSR and Harvey first paired in the 2017 Indianapolis 500 and built a six-race program for the 2018 season, growing to a 10-event 2019 campaign before making a full-season run in 2020. That same approach is being utilized as the team continues to grow for 2021.
“We’re really excited to have Helio come onboard with us next year,” said Shank. “The idea to start off with six races for the second IndyCar was another strategic plan. As I’ve always said in the past, we will never bite off more than we can chew. It’s always been one of our goals to expand the IndyCar program, and this is the best way that we can start that. Of course the goal is to have two full-season cars.”
The three-time Indianapolis 500 winner’s arrival marks the continued growth for the Ohio-based team.
With two consecutive decades of IndyCar competition under his belt, Castroneves will bring a wealth of knowledge to MSR. The affable Brazilian has previous experience with the team, having raced for MSR’s sports car program in the 2007 Rolex 24 At Daytona. The move also sees Castroneves return to Honda power, having won 12 races onboard a Honda-powered IndyCar.
“I’m super excited to be joining Meyer Shank Racing for six IndyCar races next year,” said Castroneves. Mike (Shank) and I know each other from a long time ago and I raced with the team at Daytona. Now, with Jim (Meyer), Mike and Jack (Harvey), all three of us I feel like we have great potential. I can’t thank enough Team Penske for all of these years with them, but now it’s a new chapter in my life and I’m excited to join MSR and an incredible group of friends.”