October 12, 2018 Sun Valley, Idaho – Heinricher Racing LLC, has entered into a partnership with Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) to compete in the Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona and the 2019 International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) WeatherTech SportsCar Championship on board the No. 57 MSR Acura NSX GT3 entry. Heinricher, is a U.S. Air Force Veteran and founder of successful biotech company BooShoot.
In addition to Heinricher, from the U.S., the team will include Katherine Legge of England, Simona De Silvestro of Switzerland and Bia Figueiredo (Ana Beatriz) of Brazil. In partnership with Meyer Shank Racing (MSR), Heinricher, Legge and Figueiredo will also compete in the 2019 Michelin Endurance Cup Championship rounds with De Silvestro confirmed for the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway. The Endurance Cup will also include events at Sebring International Raceway, Watkins Glen International and Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. In addition to its full season IMSA campaign, Heinricher/MSR/CAT are targeting the 87th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The MSR team last raced and led laps at Le Mans in 2016 competing in the highly competitive LMP2 category. Legge and Heinricher will co-drive for the full-season IMSA GTD campaign.
“Caterpillar is committed to a diverse workplace that’s representative of the customers we serve around the world,” said Victoria Morrissey, Global Marketing and Brand Director. “Women are an important, valuable part of our global team and this all-female race team is an example of how we support them.”
“I am honored to partner with CAT and to have their support,” said Jackie Heinricher, Heinricher Racing. “My vision has long been to bring together a diverse team of four female drivers, some of the fastest globally, to join forces to compete together, and with the support of CAT, I get to see my long held vision become reality.” I am excited to be joining Michael Shank and the entire winning MSR team in this amazing partnership and to have the honor to compete with Katherine, Ana, and Simona.” Heinricher Racing LLC will continue to build upon this innovative racing program with the exciting addition of development driver, Loni Unser.
“This is truly a groundbreaking effort for next year, not only for us as a team but for the series as well,” Mike Shank, owner of MSR. “It’s great to have Katherine (Legge) back with us, she has been doing great this season as we fight for the championship. I also want to thank Jackie (Heinricher) for developing the Caterpillar partnership and we are excited to have her on board. Simona (De Silvestro) and Bia (Figueiredo) are also very strong talents, and hopefully with them all joined together we can make a statement next year.”
“It feels great, I have always wanted to do something like this to show the appeal of racing to a wider audience,” said Legge. “Jackie (Heinricher) has done an amazing job to create this opportunity and develop this partnership. I’m thrilled to be working with Simona (De Silvestro) and Bia (Figueiredo), and it is exciting to return to Meyer Shank Racing with the Acura NSX GT3. We’ve had great success and we are looking forward to building on that starting at Daytona.”
“It’s pretty exciting and I think for sure the line up that we have is really strong,” said De Silvestro. “All of us girls have a lot of credibility and I think it will be quite exciting so I’m really looking forward to Daytona. I think the team dynamic will be very strong. For myself, it will be a little bit of learning but I am looking forward to it. It’s quite a special feeling to be a part of such a good team that has had a lot of success so I think this is going to be a great car to be in and to give us all a strong shot. I just can’t wait to go racing in Daytona, which I have always dreamt about.”
“I never thought this could happen in my career if you were to ask me a few years ago but it feels pretty exciting,” said Figueiredo. “I’ve known Katherine (Legge) and Simona (De Silvestro) for a long time and they had great success where they have raced. The MSR team is always fighting for wins and championships in IMSA and I am sure they will do the best they can to get this girl power team in high positions. I can’t wait to be in the car for such important races like Daytona where I’ve never raced before but I’ve always dreamt about.”
About Caterpillar Inc.
Caterpillar is the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. We are also a leading financial services provider through Caterpillar Financial Services.
About Jackie Heinricher
Jackie Heinricher, generously supported by Caterpillar Inc., believes the partnership reflects not only her passion for racing but for her unique story and impressive background. A role model for all, Heinricher is a mature self-made entrepreneur and scientist, having started a successful biotech company, called Booshoot, from her garage. She has authored numerous journal articles and patents and continues to spearhead visionary Intellectual Property development in plant sciences and innovative forestry. On the racing track, Heinricher has competed in Ferrari Challenge, Lamborghini Super Trofeo, and the Red Bull Global Rally Cross Series. Heinricher has a track record of making history—she was the first woman to compete in the North American Blancpain Super Trofeo, and she brought the first female co-driver duo, herself included, to the 2017 Lamborghini series. Heinricher Racing LLC will continue to build upon this first of its kind program. To learn more go to booshootbiotech.com and jackieheinricher.com.
About Meyer Shank Racing
After making a mark for himself as a professional racing driver, team owner Mike Shank first started Michael Shank Racing in the Champ Car Toyota Atlantic Championship, flourishing with the likes of Kenny Wilden, Sam Hornish Jr., and Johnny Rutherford before switching the team into a new direction and into the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series in 2004. The team flourished in IMSA Prototype competition, leading and earning a podium the first race that it entered. The team then made its 24 Hours of Le Mans debut in 2016 and then made its 250th Prototype start where the team saw victory at the Petit Le Mans in 2016. Moving out of the Prototype ranks in 2017, MSR served as a factory team for the inaugural year with the Acura NSX GT3. Over the course of the next two race season, MSR earned four wins and 11 podiums with the Acura NSX GT3. MSR also first entered into the Verizon IndyCar series and into the 2017 Indianapolis 500. The team continued its IndyCar campaign for six more outings into 2018 with driver Jack Harvey in the No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda. 2018 also welcomed Jim Meyer to the Michael Shank Racing family, serving as new co-owner alongside Mike Shank as the team was rebranded as Meyer Shank Racing.
About Acura / Honda Performance Development
Acura is a leading automotive luxury nameplate that delivers Precision Crafted Performance – a commitment to evocative styling, high performance and innovative engineering, all built on a foundation of quality and reliability. Five of the six models in the Acura lineup are made exclusively in central Ohio, using domestic and globally-sourced parts, including the ILX and TLX luxury sports sedans (Marysville Auto Plant), the RDX and MDX luxury SUVs (East Liberty Auto Plant) and the Acura NSX supercar, which is built to order at the Performance Manufacturing Center in Marysville, Ohio.