Starworks Motorsport has announced its return to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in 2019, with Ryan Dalziel being confirmed as the team’s first full-time entrant that will see the team run in the GT Daytona class with an Audi R8 LMS GT3.
Parker Chase will join Dalziel for the North American Endurance Cup events, starting with the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona, with Christopher Haase and Ezequiel Companc joining the line-up for the race at the Daytona International Speedway.
“When my 2018 program was announced it was ending the first call I got was from Peter Baron at Starworks saying we should get the band back together,” said Dalziel, who was part of Tequila Patron ESM’s line-up for three of the past four seasons having competed with Starworks as far back ago as in 2012.
“I’ve enjoyed much of my racing success under the Starworks banner and I’ve put all my efforts in the past few months making this happen. Continuity is so important in racing, and surrounding yourself with people who truly believe in you.
“This program is a continuation from the 2018 championship winning effort with Parker. He and I sharing a car with Peter Baron steering the ship is a force to be reckoned with. Audi has been a big part of making this happen and I’m extremely grateful for their trust in us to represent them.”
Chase moves to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship from the Pirelli World Challenge, where he won the SprintX Pro/Am Championship alongside Dalziel, and he still has the chance to become the Scotsman’s full-time team-mate in 2019, although that is still to be determined.
“I’m super happy to be joining Starworks Motorsport for my 2019 IMSA campaign, and to be driving with Ryan again,” said Chase. “It’s great to continue my relationship with Audi as well in the new R8 GT3 Evo.
“It’ll be my first time at Daytona and I can’t be more excited. I’m ready to get started.”
Team owner Peter Baron said it was the perfect time to move into the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship full-time in 2019 after their efforts in the Pirelli World Challenge.
“Despite not fielding a Starworks Motorsports entry ourselves, our team has still been very busy in both IMSA and Pirelli World Challenge,” said Baron. “I have enjoyed success and working personally with the Audi Sport Customer Racing group and look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationship in America.
“Based on all the success we had with Parker Chase and Ryan Dalziel in Pirelli World Challenge in the Audi R8 LMS, we felt it was the right time to move and enter into the IMSA WeatherTech series full time.
“I’m very excited to have two drivers who not only bring in strong, consistent results, but who also work so well together. Ryan and I have had tremendous success in the past and look forward to us pushing again for more wins and championships.
“Watching how Parker has matured in the car over last season was very rewarding, and I believe this 17 year old is going to have a fantastic future in sports car racing as he develops from a successful sprint driver into an endurance driver.”
Companc will join the team for all four North American Endurance Cup races, while Audi factory driver Haase will compliment the line-up for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, with Baron content with the drivers he will have his disposal for the opening round of 2019.
“I’m proud to have Haase and Companc complete our endurance line-up,” said Baron. “Both have had fantastic results and bring the pace we need to win.
“The competition is pretty intense in the GTD and I now believe we have one of the best line-ups by adding Chris and Ezequiel. We tested two weeks ago with Ryan, Parker, and Ezequiel and had great results. We have a great team environment, which I believe is one of the keys to victory.”