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...

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

De Silvestro Signs With KVRT

KV Racing Technology announced Tuesday morning the signing of Simona De Silvestro to pilot one of the team's IZOD IndyCar Series entry in 2013, alongside teammate Tony Kanaan.

“I’m really excited to be joining KV Racing Technology,” De Silvestro said, “I think it’s going to be great having Tony as a teammate. It’s never easy to make a change like this, but I’m confident that it’s the right move for me going forward. I do want to thank Keith and HVM Racing for helping me gain a ton of experience these last three years. Even though we struggled last year with our engine, I learned a lot. Now it’s time to move on and look forward to next season. I’m proud of the fact that I’m the spokesperson for the Nuclear Clean Air Energy campaign and very happy that Entergy, AREVA, and all my sponsors will continue to support my racing efforts”.

De Silvestro will bring along Nuclear Clean Air Energy sponsorship with the move from HVM Racing and will continue running the No. 78.

"I am very happy to welcome Simona to KV Racing Technology," says team co-owner Kevin Kalkhoven. "I have been watching her race for many years and she shows tremendous talent.  I think we will really see this on the road/street courses and having Tony as a teammate will provide her a wealth of information, so I am excited for what the 2013 season will hold."

Imran Safiulla, a supporter of De Silvestro since her pre-Atlantics days, will also make the move from HVM to KVRT as a team principal.

Kanaan will work as De Silvestro's first teammate since making the move to IndyCar in 2010.

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Bernard Era: Important Events

Some have his fingerprints, others do not, a list of important events over Randy Bernard's 973-day term as INDYCAR CEO:

2/02/2010 - IRL announces the signing of Randy Bernard as Chief Executive Officer.
3/01/2010 - Bernard assumes CEO duties.
3/05/2010 - BAT Engineering becomes the 5th possible chassis manufacturer.
3/15/2010 - VERSUS returns to DirectTV after long negotiations.
3/22/2010 - IRL announces formation of the ICONIC committee.
3/26/2010 - IRL announces Gil de Ferran's position on the ICONIC committee
4/01/2010 - Steve Shunk hired as VP of Public Relations for Indycar.
4/13/2010 - 6 remaining ICONIC members selected by Bernard announced.
4/16/2010 - IRL forms 'Technical Review Committee'.
4/27/2010 - Road/street, and oval championships announced.
6/02/2010 - Baltimore GP announced after months of speculation.
6/02/2010 - 2012 Engine specs announced.
6/16/2010 - IRL releases incident review of Simona de Silvestro's fiery Texas incident.
7/14/2010 - The ICONIC Committee announces the 2012 Dallara chassis/body kit strategy.
7/25/2010 - Brian Barnhart makes controversial call in Edmonton.
8/02/2010 - Bernard hands down $60k fine and probation to Helio Castroneves for his actions following Edmonton.
8/15/2010 - Tony Cotman hired as 'Project Manager' for the 2012 car.
8/17/2010 - Texas' 'back-to-back' 2011 races announced.
9/10/2010 - IRL officially renamed INDYCAR.
9/10/2010 - INDYCAR announces 2011 schedule, including New Hampshire and a return of Milwaukee. Chicagoland, Homestead-Miami, Kansas, and Watkins Glen removed.
10/20/2010 - INDYCAR announces the National Drivers Championship scholarship with USAC.
11/03/2010 - INDYCAR cancels the just announced 2011 Edmonton event.
11/12/2010 - GM announces their return with Chevrolet to the IZOD IndyCar Series.
11/18/2010 - Lotus announces their intent to provide engines in 2012.
11/11/2011 - INDYCAR opens an office in Santa Monica, CA.
1/12/2011 - INDYCAR holds first State of INDYCAR event.
1/12/2011 - INDYCAR announces the implementation of double-file restarts.
1/12/2011 - INDYCAR announces the return of Edmonton to the 2011 schedule
2/17/2011 - Tony George and three others join Hulman and Company board.
2/22/2011 - INDYCAR announces $5mil. challenge.
3/04/2011 - Firestone announces they'll leave INDYCAR following 2011.
3/11/2011 - Firestone announces they've signed on through 2013 with INDYCAR.
5/10/2011 - 2012 Dallara concept cars unveiled.
6/03/2011 - INDYCAR announces the Motegi event will be ran on the road course due to earthquake damage to the oval.
6/23/2011 - Dan Wheldon and BHA named 2012 car test team.
6/29/2011 - INDYCAR suspends O2 Racing Technology.
7/05/2011 - INDYCAR announces the return of Fontana to the 2012 schedule.
8/08/2011 - The 2012 car turns it's first on-track laps at Mid-Ohio.
8/10/2011 - IMS announces the '500' will return to ABC through 2018.
8/14/2011 - Brian Barnhart makes controversial call to go green in New Hampshire.
8/15/2011 - INDYCAR announces the chassis body kits will be delayed to 2013.
8/24/2011 - NHR and Ganassi protest on New Hampshire held. RHR retains win.
9/01/2011 - 2012 car turns first laps at IMS. On the road course.
9/09/2011 - Jeff Belskus named President and CEO of Hulman and Company.
9/13/2011 - Dan Wheldon excepts $5mil. Go Daddy IndyCar Challenge.
9/28/2011 - The 2012 car turns its first laps on the IMS oval.
10/12/2011 - INDYCAR announces the return of Belle Isle to the 2012 schedule.
10/12/2011 - INDYCAR unveils the new championship trophy.
10/16/2011 - Dan Wheldon passes away in Las Vegas.
11/30/2011 - Terry Angstadt resigns as President of the Commercial Division
11/30/2011 - Marc Koretzky becomes INYCAR's Director of Corporate Business Development.
11/30/2011 - Brian Barnhart removed as Race Director.
12/08/2011 - INDYCAR announces Las Vegas Speedway will not return to the 2012 schedule.
12/14/2011 - INDYCAR announces the findings into Dan Wheldon's Las Vegas crash.
12/27/2011 - 2012 IndyCar schedule announced.
1/04/2012 - Beaux Barfield named IZOD IndyCar Series Race Director.
2/10/2012 - Milwaukee officially added to the 2012 schedule.
3/28/2012 - INDYCAR announces that the Houston GP will return in 2013.
4/24/2012 - DRR announces they've parted ways with the struggling Lotus group.
5/10/2012 - BHA announces they will switch from Lotus to Honda power.
5/16/2012 - Dragon Racing announces they've signed with Chevy after leaving Lotus.
5/29/2012 - Bernard tweets: "it is true that an owner is calling others trying to get me fired. I have had several owners confirm this. disappointing"
6/13/2012 - INDYCAR announces the China event has been cancelled.
7/12/2012 - COO Marc Koretzky resigns.
9/21/2012 - INDYCAR announces Edmonton will not return in 2013.
9/30/2012 - 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series schedule announced. New events in Pocono, and Houston.
9/30/2012 - INDYCAR announces double-header events in Detroit, Toronto, and Houston.
9/30/2012 - INDYCAR announces the return of the triple crown w/a $1mil. payout.
10/19/2012 - Tony George resigns from Hulman and Co. Board
10/19/2012 - George releases statement confirming his attempt to buy series.
10/19/2012 - Hulman and Co. reconfirm the series is not for sale.
10/28/2012 - IMS board removes Randy Bernard as CEO.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Bernard Out As CEO

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway board of directors voted Sunday during a special meeting to remove Randy Bernard as Chief Executive Officer of the INDYCAR. IMS President and CEO Jeff Belskus was appointed interim CEO, a position he held for 7-months prior to Bernard's signing.

"We are very grateful for the tireless effort that Randy has invested into learning, understanding and working to grow the IndyCar Series over the last three racing seasons," Belskus said. "As both Randy and our organization have reflected on the past season and as we look toward the opportunities ahead and how to best take advantage of them, we agreed that the timing was right to pursue separate paths."

Bernard, however, will stay involved with the series under an 'avisory' role.

"I have enjoyed the opportunity to work with the entire INDYCAR community, its teams, drivers, loyal partners and fans," Bernard said. "The last three years have produced some exciting, and some difficult, times. But we have created a foundation for INDYCAR that positions it to grow over the next several years, and I am proud of what everyone at INDYCAR has been able to accomplish since I came on board."

"I want to thank the Hulman-George family, especially Josie (George), for giving me the opportunity and privilege to work with the organization and to help set a course and direction for INDYCAR," Bernard said. "With the family's firm commitment to the betterment of the sport and the dedication of our teams, drivers, partners and fans, INDYCAR is better poised for success than it has been in many years."

Bernard joined INDYCAR, then the IRL, in March 2010 after a 15-year stint as CEO of the Professional Bull Riders, Inc.

"I have developed a passion for the sport of INDYCAR, and I look forward to being involved at a strategic level as an advisor to the INDYCAR leadership," Bernard said. "As INDYCAR fans, we need to unify behind the sport in order to move it to the next level, and I look forward to providing input and being part of that unified voice along the way." 

Belskus went on to restate that the Hulman and Company is not interested in selling the series.

"The organization is full of talented professionals, and we will continue to prepare for what will be a very exciting 2013 racing season," Belskus said. "Once again, INDYCAR is not for sale, and the organization remains completely committed to owning and operating INDYCAR."

Monday, October 22, 2012

Munoz Lands FIL, '500' Ride With Andretti

Andretti Autosport announced today the signing of Carlos Muñoz to pilot the #26 Dialy-Ser Firestone Indy Lights entry full-time in 2013, in addition to a 4th IZOD IndyCar Series car at Indianapolis.

Muñoz's deal is very similar to that of Sebastian Saavedra's 2012 schedule in which he ran the full FIL season, along with three IndyCar events with AFS Racing in partnership with Andretti Autosport.

"I am just so happy that Andretti Autosport has given me the opportunity to drive (in the Indy 500) for them," said Muñoz. "Especially after they just won the championship with Ryan (Hunter-Reay). It means a lot that they trust in my capabilities with it being my first IndyCar race. It's a great honor and I know that there will be some pressure there to do a good job. My first priority is to start the (Firestone) Indy Lights season on a positive note and work each weekend at winning the championship. Once that happens, I think we will be very successful for the Indy 500."

Earning victories in Edmonton and Fontana, Muñoz recorded five podiums, nine top-10s and a fith place championship finish with his 2012 Andretti Autosport FIL crew.

The 20-year-old Colombian becomes the second non full-time driver to be confirmed for the 2013 Indianapolis 500, joining A.J. Foyt Racing's Chase Austin.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Tony George Resigns From Hulman Board

Tony George has resigned his position on the Hulman and Company board, effective immediately.

"Tony George has made the difficult decision to resign from the board because of his involvement with a group that has recently expressed an interest in purchasing the Hulman & Company-owned INDYCAR organization," said Jeff Belskus, Hulman & Company president and CEO. "While the business is not for sale and no offers to sell it have been considered or are being considered, we applaud Tony's efforts to resolve the appearance of a conflict and appreciate the gravity of this decision."

The announcement is the first confirmation from either party on the rumored interest in an INDYCAR buyout.

"I realize that my recent efforts to explore the possibility of acquiring INDYCAR represent the appearance of a conflict, and it is in everyone's best interest that I resign from the Hulman & Company board," Tony George said. "It goes without saying that I want to do what is best for this organization."

The current 10-member Hulman & Company board includes: Mari Hulman George, Nancy L. George, M. Josephine George, Katherine M. George-Conforti, Andre B. Lacy, Michael L. Smith, John F. Ackerman, Jeffrey G. Belskus, Mark D. Miles and James T. Morris.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Q&A With Josef Newgarden

Holding coaching duties for the 2nd annual Chris Griffis Memorial Mazda Road to Indy Open Test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, IZOD IndyCar Series driver Josef Newgarden set down to talk about the test, what advice he'd give a 17-year-old Josef, whether or not he's still a rookie and more.


Thursday, October 11, 2012

MRTI Test Day 1

Wednesday the Indianapolis Motor Speedway was home to Day 1 of 2 of the 2nd annual Chris Griffis Mazda Road to Indy Open Test. Designed to showcase the up-and-coming drivers on INDYCAR's ladder system to the IZOD IndyCar Series, 48 car/driver combinations between the three series turned laps.

Antii Buri led the 23-car USF2000 field with a best lap of 1:28:135 (102.688mph), while Team Pelfrey's Spencer Pigot turned out a lap at 1:25:603 (105.725mph) in is Star Mazda machine.

Zach Veach, behind the wheel of a Firestone Indy Lights Dallara for just the 3rd time, was quickest among the 13-car FIL field with a quick lap of 1:19:2209 (114.256mph.)