Actor Patrick Dempsey is no stranger to racing. After his wife sent him to a three-day Skip Barber driving school, the actor fell in love with road racing has gone on to compete in Grand-Am for the last several years. McDreamy even got the chance to race at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2009, finishing in 9th in the GT2 class behind the wheel of a Ferrari F430 GT.

After getting a taste of Le Mans, Dempsey now has aspirations to return to the legendary endurance race, but this time with his own team and his own car. At the 12 Hours of Sebring earlier this year, Dempsey Racing announced that they would be fielding a car in the P2 class for part of the 2012 ALMS season with the eventual goal of competing at the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Dempsey and his team took the first steps towards their Le Mans goal this past weekend by debuting their new V8-powered Lola B12/87 race car in the P2 class at the six-hour ALMS race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. This was Dempsey's first time driving a modern prototype race car, and he admitted there would be a steep learning curve.

"It feels familiar but so much more intense – the braking, the acceleration, cornering and power, it is all on a much more dynamic level than the GT cars I have driven," Dempsey said after a practice session with the car. "It's an amazing machine and it is incredible to even have the opportunity to race in a car like this at this level, and what better track to start with than Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca."

Dempsey and his team eventually finished 30th overall and fourth in class – not bad for a brand new team with a rookie driver. They plan to compete in several more races this year and will be running the full ALMS season in 2013.

You can see photos of the Dempsey Racing Lola B12/87 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in the gallery above.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 14 Comments
      Andre Neves
      • 3 Years Ago
      Good for him. I wish I could see Tom Cruise do the same. He's a great driver and a car aficionado.
      ROLO
      • 3 Years Ago
      Racer first actor second this has always been.
        Drakkon
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ROLO
        He's not Paul Newman yet, but give him 40 more years. He may be!
      RetrogradE
      • 3 Years Ago
      I wish I was as wealthy that I could race like Dempsey or Eric Bana. But alas, I earn the USA average, have 5 kids, and drive a GTI. Sure it could be worse, but would prefer it to better. Damnation I wish I had more money
        Timothy Tibbetts
        • 3 Years Ago
        @RetrogradE
        5 kids man! That will hold you down :)
        eddyjoe
        • 3 Years Ago
        @RetrogradE
        a GTI? that's a solid machine. start looking into autocross. the poor mans racing :)
          Cory Stansbury
          • 3 Years Ago
          @eddyjoe
          kart racing too. No need to hold yourself down. Heck, follow Carolla's advice and find a guy who just spent a ton of money building a spec miata and now is getting a divorce. You don't need a fast car to have fun...I can assure you of that.
      Mike
      • 3 Years Ago
      I guess who ever blog this news wasn't much of a racing fan. If he was, he'd realised that there were 5 LMP2 cars competing in the field of 35 cars (this ain't the Nurburgring 24 Hours). So finishing 4th in class and 30th overall isn't that much of an achievement. And ALMS isn't what it used to be when team like Audi was competing for the crown. Now there are only 2 LMP1 cars racing and with Petit Le Mans out of FIA/WEC Calender, Sebring stands the last bastion to what was once a great racing series.
      ssbjohn
      • 3 Years Ago
      does this mean he is dropping out of the grand am rolex series ?
        Drakkon
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ssbjohn
        No, he and Klaus Graf will jet-pool and race one on Saturday and one on Sunday. Several works drivers seem to keep this schedule.
          ssbjohn
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Drakkon
          thanks for reply---thats going to be one hell of a grind---hope he can handel it
      Stacey Snyder
      • 3 Years Ago
      How do you make a small fortune in car racing? Start with a large one!
      Muhammed Ahmed Shoai
      • 3 Years Ago
      Good for you mate :)
      Drakkon
      • 3 Years Ago
      V8 power sipping through that tiny straw on the roof. Poor engine.
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