Many IndyCar stars do one-off appearances in the marquee events of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship like the Rolex 24 At Daytona each January.
Conversely, some IMSA drivers would love to compete in the NTT IndyCar Series, but endurance sports car racing isn’t known as a springboard to single-seaters.
Although Tom Blomqvist has enjoyed considerable success on the sports car team fielded by Meyer Shank Racing, the news that he will compete in IndyCar for MSR next season may have seemed to some like it was coming from left field. However, a closer inspection of his credentials shows Blomqvist is one of the sport’s most well-rounded drivers.
The 29-year-old was born in Great Britain; raised in New Zealand; is a citizen of New Zealand, Sweden and the United Kingdom (which is the country he’s mostly associated with today); and lives in Monaco.
“I’m a cocktail,” he said with a grin.
He’s the son of Stig Blomqvist, a retired Swedish driver who is a legend in rally competition. When his parents separated, Blomqvist went to live with his mother in New Zealand when he was 6. After getting his start in karting at the age of 8, he began racing cars in 2009 in Europe’s single-seater junior formulas.
In 2010, he was the youngest Formula Renault UK champion at the age of 16, and picked up several prestigious awards. The following year he competed in the German Formula 3 series.
He drove in the European F3 Championship in 2012, ’13 and ’14. He finished second in European F3 behind Esteban Ocon and ahead of Max Verstappen in 2014.
Blomqvist made his DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) debut in 2015, becoming the second-youngest race winner in that series’ history.
In 2017, he added the Asian Le Mans Series and the Blancpain GT Series. The following year he won the 24 Hours of Spa and finished runner-up at the WEC Six Hours of Fuji while tackling IMSA’s WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and competing in six rounds of the ABB FIA Formula E season for the MS&AD Andretti Formula E team.
He ran IMSA’s top series again in 2019. The following year he came in second at the Bathurst 12 Hours. He also ran the last two races of the ABB FIA Formula E series in Berlin, winning the pole on his first day in the car. He made his Le Mans debut; his third appearance at the 24 Hours of Spa; came in fourth at the Nürburgring 24 Hours and won the Paul Ricard 1,000 km in 2020.
Blomqvist ran full seasons in both the ABB FIA Formula 3 Championship and the FIA World Endurance Championship in 2021, finishing runner-up in the LMP2 standings in the latter with five podium finishes in six races, including a second at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
In 2022, he won the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with MSR’s Acura, which included victories at the Rolex 24 and the Petit Le Mans. He also finished third in the Electric Touring Car Racing standings with four podiums in six races.
One of the rewards for the sports car success was getting a test in a MSR Indy car at Sebring (Fla.) Int’l Raceway, where he was immediately impressive.
He earned the pole, set the fastest lap of the race and won the Rolex 24 for the second year in a row with MSR in January. His co-drivers were Colin Braun, Helio Castroneves and Simon Pagenaud. He also ran in the 2023 FIA World Endurance LMP2 championship.
The August announcement of Blomqvist’s move to IndyCar with MSR was extremely timely, as two months later MSR revealed it will sit out the 2024 IMSA WeatherTech season until it can obtain more manufacturer/sponsor support.