Jim Meyer joins Meyer Shank Racing as co-owner


Credit: James Boone

Verizon IndyCar Series competitors, Michael Shank Racing, has announced that they will rebrand to become Meyer Shank Racing after the arrival of the team’s new co-owner Jim Meyer. Jim, the CEO of the Sirius XM radio broadcast company in the United States, will enter the world of motorsport with this appointment, having been a fan of IndyCar for much of his life.

The news of Meyer’s appointment to the team was announced on Friday, with Meyer citing his respect for how Michael Shank went about setting up his team as a reason for why he has gotten onboard with MSR.

“I have been thinking about a way to be involved in the sport for a long time, but didn’t have a clear path in mind until I met Mike (Shank),” said Meyer, “We are very different people, but he really impressed me with what he has done to build this organization and some of the risks he took along the way.
“I knew early on that he was the kind of person that I wanted to partner with and I really respect what he has done. We share the dream of winning the Indianapolis 500 and I’m really excited to be working towards that with Mike.”
Michael Shank Racing began back in 2004 when Shank himself mortgaged his house in order to afford an IMSA Prototype. The team soon entered the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship, with the highlights of their time in the sport so far being victories at the 2012 Rolex 24 at Daytona and the 2016 Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.
Shank has long been trying to expand into the Verizon IndyCar Series. After numerous attempts, including a one-off entry in conjunction with Andretti Autosports in last year’s Indianapolis 500, the team finally got on the grid with their own car for the start of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series. This was made possible with help from Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, who have a technical alliance with MSR.
The team made their debut at the opening round of the season, the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, last month, with their driver Jack Harvey sadly retiring from the race mid-way through. The team, who will henceforth race under the Meyer Shank Racing banner, will take part in five more races this season. The highlight of their part-time schedule will, of course, be the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500 in May, Harvey will be out on track in the #60 Honda at Long BeachMid-OhioPortland and Sonoma.
“Since day one of this team, it has just been my wife (MaryBeth) and I running it and I hadn’t set out to take on a partner,” said Shank. “But when I met Jim (Meyer), it was clear how a structure like this could help the team grow in the long term, so it began to make more and more sense.
 
“Having a strong financial foundation to build the organization and bringing in a top-level CEO with the kind of commercial background that Jim has is going to help us grow our depth. This is big for everyone on this team, and we’re really motivated to go out and be successful with the tools that we have moving forward.”
The next race for Meyer Shank Racing and Jack Harvey will be at the 2018 Grand Prix of Long Beach, which will take place on April 15.