AMSP Adds NTT Data to Car 6; Kanaan Joins for 500

Tony Kanaan at IMS testing

Last night I learned that NTT Data had parted ways with Chip Ganassi Racing. Today AMSP announces the company as their new multi year sponsor.

The news release from Arrow McLaren SP:

“NTT DATA joining our great group of partners is a huge boost for Arrow McLaren SP”

November 1, 2022

McLaren Racing and NTT DATA today announced a multiyear partnership with Arrow McLaren SP beginning with the 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season on the No. 6 NTT DATA Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet, driven by Felix Rosenqvist.  In addition, NTT DATA will partner with Arrow McLaren SP on a fourth car entry in the 2023 Indianapolis 500 with Tony Kanaan, who will be racing in his 22nd Indy 500.

NTT DATA will be the Lead Partner on Felix’s No. 6 Chevrolet for 10 races in the 2023 season, highlighted by the season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, NTT DATA’s home race at Texas Motor Speedway, the Indy 500, Music City Grand Prix on the Streets of Nashville and the season finale at the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. In addition to Felix’s Indy 500 entry, NTT DATA will be a major sponsor on Tony’s Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet for the world-renowned race.

The NTT DATA brand will be represented on Felix’s fire suit and team kit throughout the 2023 season. The global technology and business solutions provider will also serve as the Official IT Services Partner for the team’s operations and have associate branding on the cars of Pato O’Ward and Alexander Rossi.

NTT DATA’s parent company NTT has been the title sponsor of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES since 2019 and is committed to delivering innovation and advancing technology through its partnerships.

Looking ahead to the 107th Running of the Indy 500, Tony joins a lineup of Arrow McLaren SP drivers who have experience at the front of the grid in the iconic race. Alexander, newcomer to the team in 2023, won the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 in 2016 and will race in the No. 7 Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet. Pato, who drives the No. 5 car, finished second in the 2022 race, followed by Felix in fourth last season. Tony secured third place in the race last year.

Tony’s resume includes an Indy 500 win in 2013, runner-up finish in 2004 and three third-place finishes over 21 appearances in “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” He also has won 17 INDYCAR races and a series championship in 2004. 

This will be the first year the Arrow McLaren SP team, led by Racing Director Gavin Ward, has a four-car lineup for the Indianapolis 500.

Zak Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing, said: 

“NTT DATA joining our great group of partners is a huge boost for Arrow McLaren SP. I’m thrilled they will be representing our No. 6 car as a Lead Partner and a major sponsor for our fourth entry in the Indy 500, piloted by Tony Kanaan. Tony proved last year he can compete with the best of them, and I’m excited to see him put on a show with our team next May.”

Bob Pryor, CEO, NTT DATA Services, said: 

“We welcome the opportunity to partner with McLaren, a long-term and valued client, and to demonstrate how sponsorships simultaneously build awareness and enhance business-to-business relationships. NTT DATA is also proud of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES’ growth with a strong international stable of drivers, great leadership from Penske Entertainment, and a passionate fan base attracted to the highly competitive product – where any driver can win in any weekend.”

Felix Rosenqvist, Arrow McLaren SP driver, said:

“I look forward to representing NTT DATA once again. They’re a great partner and are committed to the series. I welcome them to the McLaren Racing family and am ready to start the season off in St. Petersburg, racing the No. 6 NTT DATA Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet. It will also be great to race alongside Tony and learn from him as we prepare for the Indy 500.”

Tony Kanaan, Arrow McLaren SP Indianapolis 500 driver, said:

“I feel extremely lucky to get another shot racing in the Indianapolis 500. I’m excited to work with Pato, Felix and Alexander and race with the Arrow McLaren SP team. My biggest battle in last year’s race was against these three drivers so working with them and driving with them will be exciting for all of us.” Previous

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Marcus Ericsson Joins Speedway Legends 0n The Borg Warner Trophy

The image of 2022 Indianapolis 500 winner Marcus Ericsson is now on the Borg warner trophy, fixing his place oi Speedway history. The unveiling took place this morning at Union 50 in downtown Indianapolis. Through 2018, the winner’s image unveiling was a small public affair at the IMS Museum. In 2019 Simon Pagenaud first saw his face on the trophy in France. Helio Castroneves’ mage for 2021 occurred at the PRI show.

Following a short clip of the end of the 106th running of the Indianapolis 500, a brief video message from Kenny Brack,, the 1999 winner, and a fellow Swede of Ericsson, played.

IMS resident Doug Boles and Borg Warner representative Michelle Collins introduced Ericsson, who removed the covering from the trophy bas and had his first look of his face on the trophy.

Today’s affair was an elegant event that the Penske footprint all over it. A luncheon followed the invitation only ceremony.

Indycar photo

The likeness is one of the more authentic ones in the last few years. I have felt many of the recent image son the trophy looked pretty much the same. Ericsson’s image is very true to life.

Doug Boles introduces Ericsson

The crew of the number 8 Huski Chocolate car

IMS Event Tickets Now on Sale

FRom IMNS:

2023 IMS Event Tickets On Sale Now
at IMS.com, Ticket Office
 
 INDIANAPOLIS (Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2022) – Tickets for marquee events in 2023 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway – including the 107th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge and the Brickyard Weekend NASCAR / INDYCAR tripleheader – are on sale online at IMS.com and at the IMS Ticket Office.
The IMS Ticket Office is located on the first floor of the IMS Administration Building at 4790 W. 16th St. in Indianapolis. Hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. ET. Tickets also can be purchased by calling 317-492-6700 or 800-822-4639.
“The 2023 lineup offers both old favorites and new experiences for our fans as we welcome them to The Racing Capital of the World,” IMS President J. Douglas Boles said. “With tickets for the best available seats at the lowest remaining prices now available, our fans can plan for another great season of events at IMS.”
Tickets for the following 2023 events are on sale at IMS.com/tickets and the Ticket Office:
NTT INDYCAR SERIES GMR Grand Prix: Saturday, May 13
Miller Lite Carb Day: Friday, May 26
107th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge: Sunday, May 28
Indy 500 Snake Pit presented by Coors Light: Sunday, May 28
Brickyard Vintage Racing Invitational: Saturday, June 17 and Sunday, June 18
NTT INDYCAR SERIES Gallagher Grand Prix: Saturday, Aug. 12
NASCAR Xfinity Series Pennzoil 150 at the Brickyard: Saturday, Aug. 12
NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard: Sunday, Aug. 13
Intercontinental GT Indianapolis 8-Hour: Friday, Oct. 6-Sunday, Oct. 8
Customers also can purchase admission to practice, qualifications and the public drivers’ meeting, as well as parking, camping, hospitality and public credentials (Bronze Badge, Silver Badge, garage passes, pit passes) for these events at IMS.com.
All products are on sale at their lowest remaining prices, with increases coming in 2023. The $4 per-ticket service fee will be waived on items purchased before Jan. 1. Kids 15 and under will continue to be admitted free in general admission locations to all 2023 racing events at IMS when accompanied by an adult general admission ticket holder.
Miller Lite Carb Day and Snake Pit presented by Coors Light concert lineups will be announced soon. The Firestone Legends Day concert will once again be held at the TCU Amphitheater at White River State Park. Performers and ticket sale information will be announced later.
Ticket applications are open for the 2023 Driven2SaveLives BC39 presented by WeatherTech. Fans can sign up to receive ticket information for the IMSA Battle on the Bricks to be held Sept. 15-17.

Ericsson’s Image Added to Borg Warner Thursday

From IMS- Invitation only, but streaming available.

Ericsson To Unveil Image on Borg-Warner Trophy
Thursday in Indianapolis
 
 Marcus Ericsson will unveil his likeness on the Borg-Warner Trophy as the winner of the 106th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge at 11:30 a.m. ET Thursday, Oct. 27 at Union 50 in downtown Indianapolis.
Ericsson, from Sweden, won “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” for the first time May 29 in the No. 8 Huski Chocolate Chip Ganassi Racing Honda.
Ericsson and other special guests will be available for interviews following the ceremony at Union 50, a restaurant located on 620 N. East St. in the popular Mass Ave section of Indianapolis.
Fans can watch the invitation-only event live on IMS.com and the INDYCAR App powered by NTT DATA.

Frost Sweeps Lights Test

Danial Frost led both test sessions at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway today in the Chris Griffis Memorial Test.

The release from IMS:

INDIANAPOLIS (Friday, Oct. 21, 2022) – Danial Frost staked his claim as a driver to watch for the 2023 Indy Lights championship by leading the Chris Griffis Memorial Test on Friday, Oct. 21 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Indy Lights veteran Frost, from Singapore, led the 16 drivers participating in the annual test with a top lap of 1 minute, 16.2526 seconds in the No. 68 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing entry. That time came during the morning session on the 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course, and he also led the afternoon session at 1:16.2794.
SEE: Combined Results
“Today went pretty well,” Frost said. “I’m quite happy with how the progress has gone. We’re looking more to getting the balance right, and being at the top is a nice refresh and helps us make sure we’re making good progress. The team has done an excellent job even though we have nine cars now. We’re still fast.”
Less than one-half second separated the top nine drivers overall in the test, named in memory of Chris Griffis, the team manager of Schmidt Peterson Motorsports who passed away suddenly in September 2011. Griffis led the team to five Indy Lights championships from 2003-2011.
2022 Rookie of the Year Hunter McElrea was second at 1:16.3769 in the No. 27 Andretti Autosport car. Ernie Francis Jr., who has joined the powerful HMD Motorsports team for his second season in 2023, ended up an impressive third at 1:16.4489 in the No. 99 HMD Motorsports with Force Indy car. Francis finished 10th in the series standings as a rookie in 2022.
“Coming into today, expectations are high, being with HMD, a championship-winning team last year,” Francis said. “We know we have the potential to be fast, and today was pretty good. We ended up P3. Really happy with that. That’s the highest we’ve been in the order all season. I think it should be a really competitive (2023) season. The times look really close, and I think we have a top-five car. It will make for a good year.”
Rookie Nolan Siegel was fourth at 1:16.4852 in the No. 39 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne entry, and Kyffin Simpson ensured HMD drivers took four of the top five spots by ending up fifth at 1:16.4858 in the team’s No. 21 car.
There was only one incident in six hours of testing. Three-time W Series champion Jamie Chadwick touched the grass at the entry of Turn 14 and made contact with the SAFER Barrier in the No. 28 Andretti Autosport car. She was unhurt and continued in the afternoon session.
The 16 drivers combined to turn 945 laps during the test.

Palou F1 Debut

Alex Palou finished Practice 1 just 0.3 seconds behind teammate Lando No0rris on the same tire compound. Palou did not run the softer tire. He did a creditable job.

Frost Leads Indy Lights Morning Session at IMS

Danial Frost turned the fastest lap in the morning test session at IMS, as the Indy Lights had its first 2023 preparation test 16 cars are participating in the Chris Griffiths memorial test today. The test is closed to the public. The driver from Singapore had a quick lap of 1:16.2526 in the HMD Motorsports entry.

This morning’s round ended when Jamie Chadwick crashed. The car suffered left rear damage. Chadwick was not injured.

Results:

Frost currently leads the afternoon round, followed by Ernie Francis, Jr.

Reminder: Alex Palou makes his F1 test debut this afternoon, driving one of the McLaren cars at COTA in the first USGP practice. The practice begins at 2:55 PM Eastern on ESPN 2.

Marco Andretti Set for His 18th 500

Marco Andretti will return for his 18th Indianapolis 500 mile race in May. The number 98 Andretti Autosport car will again carry KULR sponsorship. May 0f 2023 will be third year Andretti has run the race as one off entry. Andretti won the pole for the 500 in 2020.

The field for the 500 is fast approaching 30 cars and should easily reach 33 entries.

This morning’s announcement from Andretti Autosport:

INDIANAPOLIS (Oct. 17, 2022) – KULR Technology Group (NYSE American: KULR) (the “Company” or “KULR”) will return to the grid of the 2023 Indianapolis as the primary sponsor for the No. 98 Honda of Marco Andretti as the third-generation racer makes his 18th Indy 500 start.  

“It’s great to see a sponsor like KULR continue as a primary sponsor with our INDYCAR program for the second year,” said Andretti Autosport Chairman and CEO Michael Andretti. “The development potential of KULR’s technology is exciting and we’re proud of their commitment to improving performance. We look forward to this special event in May and are happy to have them back with Marco.”  

As pioneers in their respective industries, KULR and Andretti Autosport share a commitment to excellence and progression. KULR has long been a leading developer of next-generation lithium-ion battery safety and thermal management products and services, playing a part in countless customer successes, including the 2020 Mars Rover mission.  

“We are thrilled to welcome back Marco Andretti as a KULR Ambassador as we return to Andretti Autosport for the 2023 Indy 500,” said KULR Technology Group President and COO, Keith Cochran. “Marco authentically embodies the spirit of our brand. His dedication to his craft and the motorsport industry are just some of the reasons we believe he is the perfect person to represent KULR Technology as we continue to expand our energy management platform.”  

KULR served as Andretti’s primary sponsor in 2022 for his 250th INDYCAR career start. They are no stranger to the Andretti Autosport family as they first joined Andretti Technologies and sister team, Andretti United Extreme E in 2021 as the official thermal management and battery safety technical partner.   

Andretti will make his 18th Indy 500 start piloting the No. 98 KULR Technologies / Curb Honda. Andretti has recorded eight top-10 finishes and four top-three results at the famed IMS oval, also claiming pole position in 2020. He will take to the track for Open Testing on April 20-21 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway before joining his four Andretti teammates for the 107th Running of the Indianapolis 500-Mile race in May.

Road to Indy Rebrands- Introducing the USF Pro Championships

From Andersen Promotions this morning, a rebranding of the Road to Indy. In my opinion, this is a good move. The release:

PALMETTO, Fla. – Andersen Promotions today unveiled a new moniker for the opening steps of the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires. Moving forward, the collective branding for the world’s most effective driver development program will be known as the USF Pro Championships Presented by Cooper Tires.

USF Juniors Presented by Cooper Tires – formerly a pre-step on the Road to Indy – will now become an official step on the ladder alongside USF2000 Presented by Cooper Tires and USF Pro 2000 Presented by Cooper Tires (formerly Indy Pro 2000).

The USF Pro Championships ladder will remain an acclaimed scholarship-funded path for young drivers pursuing a professional career at the top levels of motorsports.

The decision came as INDYCAR, which assumed operations of Indy Lights in 2022, reassesses its overall branding with dual management of the ladder steps between INDYCAR and Andersen Promotions and, for 2023, different tire partners.

Both USF Pro 2000 and USF2000 will continue with INDYCAR services including INDYCAR Race Control, Timing & Scoring and the AMR INDYCAR Safety Team. USF Juniors will also utilize AMR Safety Team services with Race Control and Timing & Scoring provided by USAC.

“Although we are rebranding the Road to Indy, our goals remain the same – to develop drivers, teams and crew to advance to Indy Lights and ultimately the NTT INDYCAR SERIES,” said Dan Andersen, Owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions.

“With INDYCAR taking over the operation of Indy Lights this year, the Road to Indy designation really doesn’t work moving forward for all steps on the ladder. We are proud of our accomplishments under the Road to Indy banner and intend to further develop the full USF Pro Championships as the only real place for talented young drivers on the open-wheel path.”

Scholarships to advance from USF Juniors into USF2000, USF2000 into USF Pro 2000 and USF Pro 2000 to Indy Lights will remain intact. All 2022 champions – Mac Clark, Michael d’Orlando and Louis Foster – will prepare for their next steps on the ladder in 2023 with Foster being the first to confirm his “new home” with an Andretti Autosport Indy Lights seat.

As the Official Racing School of the USF Pro Championships beginning in 2023, the Skip Barber Racing School will also be a pathway to the ladder system with a $100,000 scholarship to its Formula Race Series champion to advance into USF Juniors.

The 2023 schedules for all three levels of the USF Pro Championships will be announced in the coming days.

Indycar Opens Season with Thermal Club Test

Indycar Spring Training returns with an open test at The Thermal Club in California. Two other open tests are scheduled for 2023. The release from Indycar:

NTT INDYCAR SERIES To Host Open Test
at The Thermal Club
 

 Three Open Tests in 2023 Include Annual Indy 500 Open Test, 
Test at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

INDIANAPOLIS (Monday, Oct. 10, 2022) – INDYCAR will conduct three Open Tests for 2023 in preparation for key moments during the 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season.
The first Open Test of 2023 will feature the series’ initial trip to The Thermal Club for a season preview Thursday and Friday, Feb. 2-3. The private, world-class facility, located just outside of Palm Springs, California, opened its 470-acre property in 2012 and is known as a premier circuit for club racers and sports car enthusiasts.
INDYCAR will use a combination of the North Palm and South Palm circuits to create a 17-turn, 2.9-mile layout for the 2023 test.
“We liken this to a preseason scrimmage,” INDYCAR President Jay Frye said. “The teams will be doing everything it takes to prepare for a run at the 2023 championship at a new and unique backdrop for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. The facility is spectacular, and I know everyone at The Thermal Club cannot wait to welcome our paddock.”
Located at the base of the Santa Rosa Mountains and known as the ultimate destination for driving-minded motorsports enthusiasts, The Thermal Club has everything from luxury homes to a motorsports village and gourmet restaurants. The facility was named “Professional Motorsport Facility of the Year” at the 2017 Professional Motorsports World Expo in Germany.
“For us, it means every INDYCAR fan is going to get an inside look at the best cars in the world on what we think is the best track in the world,” said John Rogers, owner, The Thermal Club.
“It’s a wonderful thing, and we’re very happy it’s worked out with INDYCAR and Thermal.”
The Indy 500 Open Test is scheduled for Thursday and Friday, April 20-21 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The annual test on the famed 2.5-mile oval provides crucial preparation for the 107th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge, scheduled for Sunday, May 28. The entire field for “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” is expected to participate in the test.
The third and final Open Test of the 2023 season comes Thursday, Sept. 7 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, just three days before the Astor Challenge Cup is awarded to the season champion at the same facility after the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey.
Drivers at the Laguna Seca test will get an extra day to come to grips with the planned repave of the legendary 2.238-mile facility, which is expected to be completed by June 2023.The 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season opens Sunday, March 5 at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg presented by RP Funding on the Streets of St. Petersburg. Coverage will be available on NBC, Peacock Premium and the INDYCAR Radio Network.