Graham Rahal has raced and won for Chip Ganassi at the Rolex 24 at Daytona in a Daytona Prototype, and now he'll have a chance to do the same for Roger Penske in an Acura Team Penske Daytona Prototype international.
The Verizon IndyCar Series star is key member of Honda's open-wheel effort and will add to his duties for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing next season as he joins Helio Castroneves and Ricky Taylor in the second factory Acura DPi at IMSA's long-haul events.
"It's an opportunity that I've certainly been working on for a long time," he said. [Penske Racing president] Tim [Cindric] can tell you I've been all over him for many years now. Same with my connection with Honda and Acura. Those guys have been great to me through my IndyCar career. They've been the only supplier that I've ever driven for on that side of things."
Rahal is a second-generation IndyCar driver and third-generation sports car ace, following in the footsteps of his father Bobby and late grandfather Michael. With Bobby's busy career spent in the CART IndyCar Series and many weekend in IMSA's GTP category, the crossover spirit is a familiar part of the Rahal family.
"As it kind of runs in the blood, it was a perfect opportunity to come over here," he added. "Sports car racing is something that's important to myself, to my family, and clearly is a huge part of the history of Team Penske. So, combined with Acura Team Penske, I think it will be a great season for all the full-time guys. It's a dream opportunity for me to jump in and be a part of the endurance races."
Having driven for Acura's factory GT team earlier this year as part of the Michael Shank Racing program, stepping up to Prototypes with Penske is another long-held dream for Rahal. And with his father's BMW Team RLL factory GT Le Mans team competing in the same IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship events, Bobby will get to watch Graham write a new chapter for the Rahals.
"I will say that my dad has always been a huge supporter of mine," he continued. "I think it was my dad's dream to drive for Roger. He never had the opportunity to do so. I know for him there's a lot of pride that's associated with that.
"Frankly, we won't compete against them as the category they're in is different than the Prototypes. But I'm excited for this opportunity and what's ahead of us. It's a great team, great lineup of drivers. I know that the people at HPD and Acura will do a great job as we get closer to race time."