Spencer Pigot is no different than any other top-tier athlete who plies his trade when and where there’s a demand.
With five seasons and 57 NTT IndyCar Series starts to his credit, the 2015 Indy Lights champion would love to continue in the open-wheel racing, but the young American has been called to IMSA by Canada’s Motorsports In Action team where a new full-season opportunity has arisen.
The 27-year-old American will share the No. 3 McLaren 570S GT4 with countrywoman Sheena Monk in the Michelin Pilot Challenge series; Monk won last year at Road America with former teammate Corey Lewis.
Although the drive with Monk and MIA marks Pigot’s first full-time job in racing outside of the Road to Indy and IndyCar, he brings considerable experience to the partnership. From Porsche GT3 Cup in Canada to the Mazda MX-5 Cup to nearly 20 IMSA LMP2 and DPi races in Mazdas and Cadillacs, the Floridian has maintained a steady presence in sports car competition.
“It’s my main focus this year,” Pigot told RACER. “I’ve never driven in this Michelin Pilot Challenge championship before, so that’s new for me, but it’s always been entertaining to watch, and always good racing, so it’s something that I’m looking forward to.”
Working with an up-and-coming talent like Monk will also be new for Pigot in a professional environment. Driver coaching is normal for the five-time Indy 500 starter, but the role of being the senior racer in the Pro-Am MIA McLaren combination will require some adjustments.
“It’s definitely a little interesting for me in this new program,” he said. “I have a lot more overall racing experience than Sheena, driven in various series, big races and all that, but she’s obviously got a lot more time and experience in this car, and in this championship. So I want to share with her everything that I can, but there will definitely be things that we can take from each other because she’s the veteran in the McLaren. But my overall goal is to help her make the next step in her career, and hopefully we can win a few races together and have a good season.”
Pigot will be busy this weekend pulling double duty at the Roar. Along with turning his first laps in the No. 3 McLaren entry, he’s also been signed to drive for Riley Motorsports in the No. 74 Ligier LMP3 in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in a one-off at Daytona.
“I’ve got a lot to pick up and figure out with the McLaren’s electronics and road car systems,” he said. “I’ve not driven it…I’ve not even sat in it yet, so, I’ll be showing up at the Roar, trying to soak it all in, and jumping back and forth between the McLaren and with Riley. Hopefully, I can show everyone that I can drive anything I’m asked to drive.”
And for those who want to see Pigot continue his journey in IndyCar, he hopes to get another run at the Indy 500. Making his debut for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing with Citrone/Buhl Autosport last August, there’s a possibility of returning to the program in May, but nothing has been confirmed, and he continues to search for something solid.
“They’re thinking about what they want to do, but I can’t speak to what they will or won’t do at Indy,” he said. “But I know I want to race in IndyCar, at the Indy 500, and anyplace else that could fit the schedule when I have free time between IMSA races.”