Nissan announced last week that it will be joining the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship this year. The manufacturer has been relatively quiet since winning three straight manufacturer’s championships in the late 1980s, but as Nissan’s in-house performance wizards at NISMO extend their influence, it’s time to head for Le Mans once again.
Joining forces with Muscle Milk Pickett Racing, Nissan plans a strong push in 2014 for prototype class. Muscle Milk Pickett Racing becomes an official NISMO partner, following up its own back-to-back championship victories in the American Le Mans series. The cars will be piloted by some of Nissan’s international Nismo drivers, including Alex Brundle, as a part of NISMO’s “Global Driver Exchange” program. NISMO’s exchange drivers will join Muscle Milk drivers Lucas Luhr and Klaus Graf behind the wheel of the new car starting with the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
“We’re glad to welcome Muscle Milk Pickett Racing to the Nissan family and look forward to having our official drivers learn from such a successful team,” said Darren Cox, Nissan’s global motorsports director. “Greg Pickett and his team have achieved incredible results in recent years and having them as part of the NISMO Global Driver Exchange program will be an outstanding opportunity for our drivers.”
Nissan’s not the only manufacturer that will be making a splash in the series this year. Both Mazda and Ford have announced ground-breaking plans for Le Mans and its American endurance counterparts in 2014.