Dane Cameron's impressive performances this season as the lead driver in Team Sahlen's Grand-Am Daytona Prototype program have led to a unique opportunity to help one of his former co-drivers in search of an ALMS championship.
Le Mans Prototype Challenge driver Mike Guasch has worked with a revolving cast of drivers at the PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports team this year, and with four rounds left to go, has reached out to Cameron, his driver coach and former teammate at the Genoa Racing PC team, to move the No. 52 ORECA-Chevrolet from second to the top the PC standings.
The 24-year-old Californian will share the cockpit with Guasch in the Molecule-sponsored car at three races starting at Baltimore, followed by COTA and the season-ending event at Petit Le Mans. David Cheng, who has partnered with Guasch in the No. 52 at times this year, will return for VIR, and again as part of the three-driver effort at the 10-hour/1000-mile finale at Road Atlanta.
“I've known Mike for a lot of years now, and was his driver coach before we drive together at Genoa Racing [in LMPC],” Cameron told RACER. “He then went on to race cars in Europe, then came back and started racing the PC class and we won the 12 Hours of Sebring in 2011 together.
“He asked me to come drive with them and coach he and David Cheng, and as they've had an excellent year so far and have found themselves five points out from the lead in PC. So with David committed to race in the Asian Le Mans Series, that opened up the opportunity for me to step in and join Michael for three races and with David when he comes back for Petit.”
The 2007 Pro Mazda champion continues to establish himself as a top-tier sports car driver, and sees opportunities like the one presented by Guasch and PR1/Mathiasen team principal Bobby Oergel as further proof that his career is gaining momentum.
“That's been my goal; I've been trying to achieve something like this to race in both Grand-Am and the ALMS, and it's tough,” Cameron explained. “There aren't very many young guys who get opportunities to race prototypes in both series, and it's something I've been trying to develop for myself. It's really about meeting people, showing you can be trusted to race hard and bring home the car in a good position and to be the best teammate possible. I really have to thank Mike and Bobby for bringing me in and believing I can help get the job done for them.”
Cameron also credited much of his recent growth to his expanded role within the Team Sahlen's organization.
“Running with Team Sahlen's and the Nonnamaker family has been great for me the past few years,” he added. “Coming in as the lead driver, helping to developing the cars, and leading the team as we're trying to build a ground-up Daytona Prototype team – Katie Crawford and myself doing it from scratch – has been so beneficial for me. It's great to have the phone starting to ring and extra opportunities to come my way.”