The new Bachelor may look familiar to fans of the long-running program.

Former race car driver Arie Luyendyk Jr. will be in the driver's seat looking to rev up the hearts of a couple-dozen single women when the 22nd season of the ABC reality show staple returns later this fall.

Good Morning America officially broke the news on Thursday's program.


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Luyendyk, 35, is no stranger to The Bachelor franchise. He appeared on Emily Maynard's season of The Bachelorette in 2012 and had been in discussions to star as The Bachelor several times over the years. For her part, Maynard wished him the best.

Luyendyk is certainly ready for all the attention that's coming his way. “This is pretty surreal,” he told PEOPLE. “It doesn’t really feel real yet, but I’m taking it step by step. The timing is just so perfect in my life. I could not be more excited for this journey I’m about to embark on."

Wow, he said "journey," so you know he's a good fit for the show. That word gets thrown around more on The Bachelor than roses and red wine.

Someone returning to The Bachelor family is nothing new, of course. Several men and women who competed have come back in follow-up seasons, while Brad Womack has the distinction of starring as The Bachelor in two different seasons.

Casting Luyendyk also continues the show's association with athletes. Former NFL quarterback Jesse Palmer once appeared in his own season, as did the brother of Aaron Rodgers.

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