Indy Racing League champion Dan Wheldon has admitted that his decision to turn his back on Andretti Green Racing was not an easy one to make.
The Briton, who has confirmed that he will be joining Chip Ganassi Racing in 2006, believed that the time had come for him to take a new direction in his career.
"It will be different because we did grow very close," said Wheldon, referring to his time at AGR. "It is difficult, but at the same time it is a business. There are times in your life when you have to move on and I felt this was the time to do it. I came to end of my contract, talked with Chip and was excited by what he had to say.
"For me, it's a new chapter. I'm not coming here to run second. I want to win more races, more championships and more Indy 500s. This team has a great history; it wins the big races. And that's what I love to do."
Wheldon claims that his motivation to change teams but remain in the IRL was primarily because he wanted to ensure that he was in competitive machinery. But he is not expecting to automatically be racing at the front.
"I'm really excited to be here," added Wheldon, who is likely to race with the number 10 car next year. "Andretti Green Racing gave me a great opportunity and enabled me to reach a dream and win the Indianapolis 500 and the championship along the way. This is a new challenge for me and one that I'm very excited about.
"Scott and I already were talking that we want to make a big impact next year. That's a goal. I had a lot of success this season, and I'm looking to do the same (in '06). It will be a very exciting season in general.
"There will be a lot of competitive cars, so we'll have to be on top of our game. In this business, your career can be real short if you're not in competitive cars, and I felt that I would be very competitive here. So that made that part of the equation easy."