Chaves Confirmed To '500' Ride With New Team

The worst kept secret in INDYCAR was finally announced...

Napa Returns With Rossi

A.J. Foyt Racing announced...

Carpenter Signs Pigot

Ed Carpenter Racing announced...

Friday, October 29, 2010

Hunter-Reay Signs 2-year Deal

Coming just an hour after the announcement that long time partner Tony Kannan had been released from Andretti Autosport, the team announced today that Ryan Hunter-Reay has re-signed. "It will be fun preparing for the 2011 season knowing that we have a solid program with Ryan. We need to work to get stronger as a race team and put ourselves in a position to compete for our fourth series championship. Ryan will be a major part of that effort," said Andretti Autosport owner Michael Andretti.

A new 2-year contract through the 2012 season has been agreed upon, returning the American to the same team in back-to-back years for the first time since he ran with Rahal Letterman Racing in the second half of 2007 and full-time in '08.  After Ethanol dropped their sponsorship with RLR following the 2008 season, Hunter-Reay was left high and dry until a late deal with Vision Racing came together.  Competing in 6 events with behind the wheel of the #21 Vision entry, RHR jumped over to fill in for the injured Vitor Meira at Iowa before finishing out the turbulent season in the #14.

Sponsorship for Hunter-Reay will be announced 'in the near future'

"As we prepare for 2011, I have strong relationships within the team to build on. Our goals are reasonable and achievable.

Michael has taken the reins of this team, knows what he wants to accomplish and how to get there. Anything less than wins and challenging for the championship next year would be unacceptable. With that said, we all recognize there is a lot of work to be done to bring the team back to that level.

Starting the job in October, rather than in March, will be a luxury I've never had before. I look to add to my four Indy car wins and become a title contender throughout the season." - Ryan Hunter-Reay

Kanaan Released

Nearly a month after the announcement that 7-11 would not return as the primary sponsor for Tony Kannan and the #11 Andretti Autosport entry in 2011, the team announced today that they and Kanaan have reached an agreement and the current multi-year contract had been terminated. "It is difficult to believe that Andretti Autosport and Tony Kanaan will no longer be competing together, but that is now a reality with the signing of this agreement", said team owner Michael Andretti.
"When 7-Eleven notified us that they would not be returning as the primary sponsor of Tony's car in 2011, we were left with a very challenging situation. Given the timing of that notification, we felt it was important to give Tony the freedom to review his options outside of Andretti Autosport. We understand firsthand his value as a driver in this series and we did not want to prevent him from furthering his career in the event we could not arrive at a reasonable solution for him for 2011. Today we agreed that the best option for both Tony and the team is to allow him the freedom to sign with another team.    
 Personally, I want to thank Tony for all the effort and passion he shared with our race team and the fans during our eight seasons together and I am proud of what we accomplished. Tony deserved a chance when we signed him prior to the 2003 season and he made the most of that opportunity. He brought us our first pole, our first race win and our first championship. We were always a contender to win the Indianapolis 500, and while I'm disappointed we were never able to do that together, I am confident that Tony will win it before his career is over.      
We wish Tony many wins in the future, and will always consider him a member of our Andretti Autosport family and an important part of our team's history." - Michael Andretti  
After competing for 8-years with Andretti, Kanaan can now sign with a new team for next season, "I want to thank Michael Andretti and everyone at Andretti Autosport for eight years together." Kanaan said, "We created some great memories that I will always cherish and we have much to be proud of. I personally want to thank my guys for all their hard work over the years and for always believing in me. This is a team sport at the end of the day and I've considered it a pleasure to have you guys on my team."

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Indycar & USAC Announce Partnership

At a Wednesday morning press conference held on the Pit Lane at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway, INDYCAR and USAC officials announced a long awaited partnership.

Beginning with the 2010 USAC National Drivers Champion, the driver will be awarded a scholarship to compete on all oval events on the 2011 Firestone Indy Lights schedule.

The USAC National Drivers Champion will be determined based on points earned in all three National Series - Silver Crown, Sprint and Midgets.  Points will be tallied for the best 25 finishes and a Champion will be crowned.

Bryan Clauson currently leads the Championship with a 22 point lead over Levi Jones. 

"As we look forward to the future of INDYCAR, we feel it is important that we embrace our roots. I'm pleased we have formed this partnership with USAC, which was founded by Tony Hulman and produced legendary champions such as A.J. Foyt, Al Unser, Johnny Rutherford and Mario Andretti. This is an important initiative to continue the tradition of USAC oval racers competing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

I have listened to countless fans say we need more American drivers and I don't disagree, but I think it's more important to say we want the best American drivers in the world. I'm a firm believer in our official ladder system the Road to Indy. The experience the Road to Indy provides is essential for drivers to compete in the IZOD IndyCar Series. We hope to have some significant changes in the near future that enhance and strengthen the Road to Indy." - INDYCAR CEO, Randy Bernard

"INDYCAR is the pinnacle of American open-wheel racing, and USAC is honored to have this opportunity to share this new relationship and build the Road to Indy through USAC. We look forward to extending our heritage with Indy car racing while presenting new, exciting opportunities for our participants"- USAC President and CEO, Kevin Miller

Monday, October 11, 2010

Vote For Sage!

Narrowed down from an original field with thousands of nominees, 15-year-old Sage Karam is among the recently announced 10 semi-finalists for the Sports Illustrated Kid Athlete of the Year.  The Pennsylvania native piloted the #8 Andretti Autosport entry to 9 wins on his way to the 2010 USF2000 Championship.

Voting is open until Monday, October 18th at 12 P.M. EST with the top 3 vote getters advancing to the final round where SI editors will select the winner.  Place your vote NOW.

Multiple entries are allowed!

(Photo courtesy: Andretti Autosport)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

IMS Car Show May 13-14

The 100th anniversary of the first Indianapolis 500 event will kick off in style with a classic car show, scheduled for May 13th and 14th at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Featuring two divisions manufactured in the first 50 years of the Indy 500 (1911-1961), cars representing the 24 manufacturers that competed in the inaugural '500': Alco, Amplex, Apperson, Benz, Buick, Case, Cole, Cutting, Fiat, Inter-State, Jackson, Knox, Lozier, Marmon, McFarlan, Mercedes, Mercer, National, Pope-Hartford, Simplex, Stutz, Velie, and Westcott will be among approximately 250 on hand along with other classics. Each division will be broken down into 3 classifications, the Carl Fisher Era (1911-27), Eddie Rickenbacker Era (1928-45) and Early Tony Hulman Era (1946-61).

While on display and when being driven around the track, the cars will be judged with awards given out at an awards dinner at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum. Although events on May 13th are not open to the fans, those attending Opening Day on May 14th for the Indianapolis 500 can view the cars as part of their gate admission.

Potential contestants can apply online at IndianapolisMotorSpeedway.com or by mail.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for classic car owners and enthusiasts. But the 100th Anniversary Indy 500 Celebration of Automobiles is much more than just a car show. It will be a memorable tribute to the greatest race in the world and a fitting start to a month of festivities surrounding ‘The Most Important Race in History.’" - IMS Corp. President and CEO, Jeff Belskus

(Photo courtesy: Ron McQueeney IMS)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Simona Returning To HVM In '11

2010 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year, Simona De Silvestro will be returning to HVM Racing in 2011, according to team officials. “

When we started this season we could not have anticipated the challenges we would face, both financially and on track, with incidents and equipment damage. However we could not also have anticipated the development of Simona in such a short period. The team and driver showed what is possible." said HVM Racing owner Keith Wiggins, "Now it is time to put 2010 behind us and do the job properly in 2011. This team knows how to win and we are focused on getting the right package together to move forward."

Switzerland native De Silvestro, who quickly became a fan favorite, finished 19th in the season Championship. “We have tremendous chemistry as a team and money can't buy that. I am thankful for the chance Keith [Wiggins] gave me this year and for Imran’s [Safiulla] support." the 22-year-old said, "The whole team has come a long way. We faced a lot of adversity, yet we remained strong and that speaks to the character and cohesiveness of our team and my supporters. We have proved we can run up front, despite the funding challenges from sponsorship short falls.”

Monday, October 4, 2010

7-11 Out With TK

Andretti Autosport announced today that long time sponsor, 7-11, will not return as the primary sponsor for Tony Kanaan and the #11 car in 2011. "We are thankful for their many years of support and are proud of all we accomplished together" said John Lopes, Senior VP & CMO of Andretti Autosport
Although the Indycar staple is leaving TK, they aren't completely leaving the team. 7-11 will return in 2011 as an associate on the #7 GoDaddy.com entry piloted by Danica Patrick

Currently without necessary funding, Kanaan who is still under contract with Andretti has been given permission to search for a 2011 ride, "Although he remains under contract with Andretti Autosport, we have given Tony and his management the permission to talk with other IndyCar team owners to explore what other alternatives might be available at this time" Lopes said, "Our hope is to have Tony Kanaan and the 11 car as part of our IZOD IndyCar Series lineup again in 2011 and we are currently working very hard to find the necessary sponsorship to make that a reality."

Friday, October 1, 2010

UPDATE: What Dario Needs

After winning the Pole for Saturday's Cafes Do Brazil Indy 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Dario Franchitti made his quest for the 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series Championship just a bit easier.  Below is where Dario needs to finish to win his 3rd Championship, depending on where point leader Will Power crosses the finish line: