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Bourdais to Sub for Hand at Long Beach

Joey Hand ruled out of Long Beach due to flu-like illness; Sebastien Bourdais to sub…

Photo: Ford Performance

Sebastien Bourdais will take part in this weekend’s Bubba Burger Sports Car Grand Prix at Long Beach at the wheel of the No. 66 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT, subbing for regular driver Joey Hand.

The Frenchman, who completes the car’s lineup in the endurance races, has been drafted in due to flu-like symptoms for Hand, who has been ruled out of the third round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season.

It will mark Bourdais’ third start of the year in the car, after teaming with Hand and Dirk Mueller to score seventh and second place class finishes in the Rolex 24 at Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, respectively.

The trio currently sits fourth in the GT Le Mans class championship standings.

As a result of the late call-up, Bourdais will pull double duty between Saturday’s 100-minute WeatherTech Championship race as well as his full-season NTT IndyCar Series commitments with Dale Coyne Racing.

“Although we’re disappointed for Joey, we’re also fortunate to have someone like Sébastien who can step right in this weekend,” said Ford Performance motorsports director Mark Rushbrook.

“We grateful Dale Coyne Racing will allow him to do double-duty with the IndyCar race this weekend. Seb already has so many miles in the Ford GT, and knows the team and crew so well, that it’s the perfect solution.”

Sportscar365 understands that Hand is not likely to be the only full-season WeatherTech Championship driver that’s set to miss Long Beach due to illness.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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