2011 IndyCar Series Silly Season...........

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2011 IndyCar Series Silly Season...........

Postby mlittle » Sat Sep 18, 2010 12:22 pm

With two races remaining in the 2010 IndyCar Series campaign, it is once again, ladies and gentlemen, time to crack open the silly season books and see just who is going where in 2011.........


CONFIRMED ENTRIES FOR 2011
--Team Penske(2): Will Power, Helio Castroneves
--Andretti Autosport(3): Danica Patrick, Tony Kanaan, Marco Andretti
--Target/Ganassi Racing(2): Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon
--FAZZT Racing(1): Alex Tagliani
--Sarah Fisher Racing(1): Sarah Fisher
....total number of confirmed seats at present: 9

EXPECTED TO RETURN IN 2011
--Andretti Autosport(1): Ryan Hunter-Reay
--Team Penske(1): Ryan Briscoe
--HVM Racing(1): Simona de Silvestro
--Conquest Racing(1): Bertrand Baguette
--A.J. Foyt Enterprises(1): Vitor Meira
--KV Racing Tech.(1): Takuma Sato
--Dreyer & Reinbold Racing(2): Mike Conway, Justin Wilson
....total number of expected entries at present: 8

OPEN ENTRIES
--Ganassi Satellite Team(1)
--Conquest Racing(1)
--KV Racing(1-2)
--Panther Racing(1-2)
--DeFerran/Dragon Racing(1)
--Dale Coyne Racing(1-2)
--Newman/Haas Racing(1-2)
--Walker Racing(1)
--Bryan Herta Autosport(1)
....total number of open/uncertain 2011 entries: 9-13

.......drivers expected to change teams in 2011............
--Graham Rahal(Newman-Haas Racing)
--Paul Tracy(KV Racing Technology)
--Raphael Matos(DeFerran/Dragon Racing)
--Mario Moraes(KV Racing Technology)
--Dan Wheldon(Panther Racing)
--Alex Lloyd(Dale Coyne Racing)
--Hideki Mutoh(Newman-Haas Racing)
--Jay Howard(Sarah Fisher Racing)
........additional drivers of interest looking for seats in 2011..........
--J.R. Hildebrand
--Ana Beatriz
--Bruno Junquiera
--Oriol Servia
--J.K. Vernay
--Ed Carpenter
--E.J. Viso
--Townsend Bell
Last edited by mlittle on Sat Mar 19, 2011 9:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Andretti Autosport to Run Only 3 Cars in 2011

Postby mlittle » Mon Oct 04, 2010 1:08 pm

Mod's note...........I will try to find more info on this story as it will make a big effect on where the silly season chips fall.........


This evening's edition of The Speed Report on Speed Channel had a bombshell announcement as Andretti Autosport will no longer be a four-car team for 2011. According to Speed's Robin Miller, convenience store conglomerate 7-11 will no longer sponsor an IndyCar ride after 2010. As a result, the team has released 2004 series champion Tony Kanaan, who is now a free agent and whose presence will have an impact on silly season.

It is now safe to assume that the off-season rat race known as silly season has begun.......... :shock: :shock: :shock:
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Re: Andretti Autosport to Run Only 3 Cars in 2011

Postby mlittle » Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:48 am

mlittle wrote:Mod's note...........I will try to find more info on this story as it will make a big effect on where the silly season chips fall.........


This evening's edition of The Speed Report on Speed Channel had a bombshell announcement as Andretti Autosport will no longer be a four-car team for 2011. According to Speed's Robin Miller, convenience store conglomerate 7-11 will no longer sponsor an IndyCar ride after 2010. As a result, the team has released 2004 series champion Tony Kanaan, who is now a free agent and whose presence will have an impact on silly season.

It is now safe to assume that the off-season rat race known as silly season has begun.......... :shock: :shock: :shock:

Andretti Autosport Confirms 7-11 Withdrawal

Quoting the article.............
7-Eleven, Inc. has notified Andretti Autosport that it will not continue in its role as the primary sponsor of the team's #11 IZOD IndyCar Series entry beyond 2010.

7-Eleven will maintain its position as an associate sponsor on the team's #7 IZOD IndyCar Series entry for 2011. Andretti Autosport is currently working to secure primary sponsorship for the #11 car, which has been driven by Tony Kanaan since 2003.

Andretti Autosport's John Lopes says the team hopes to find a replacement as Kanaan's primary sponsor to keep the 2004 series champion in the No. 11 car next year. "We are confirming today that 7-Eleven will not be returning as the primary sponsor of the 11 car next season. We are thankful for their many years of support and are proud of all we accomplished together. 7-Eleven will continue to be an associate sponsor of our team through an ongoing contract in support of Danica Patrick's GoDaddy.com car."

(Lopes added) "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. In the meantime and 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."
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De Silvestro Returns to HVM for 2011

Postby mlittle » Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:50 am

Image

----Walking off the Championship Celebration stage Oct. 3 with the Tony Renna Rising Star Award, Simona de Silvestro felt a sense of accomplishment for the 2010 season and determination to improve in her second year. The 22-year-old Swiss driver finished 19th in the IZOD IndyCar Series standings (second in Rookie of the Year chase) with two top-10 finishes and a suitcase full of experience. She’ll return with HVM Racing for the 2011 season.

“I’m really thankful to Firestone for giving me this award,” said de Silvestro, who also was voted the Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year after advancing eight positions to finish 14th. “It shows that we really worked hard this year with HVM Racing. It’s just great to be part of a team like that because they really believed in me and they let me be who I am. The series is just great and I’m looking forward to being back next year.”

De Silvestro, an Atlantics graduate, opened eyes in the mid-March opener on the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil, by qualifying 11th. Though top-10 results were difficult to come by in the first half of the season on road/street circuits and ovals she had not competed on, the No. 78 car consistently was running in the top 10 at some point of races. She posted a high finish of eighth at Mid-Ohio and a best starting position of seventh at Edmonton.

“We had a lot of ups and downs, but there were a lot of really good ups I believe,” she said. “We were running up front with the big guys at a couple of races, and going into the season I didn’t expect that at all because we might be the smallest team out there.

“This year I learned a lot on the ovals and also the road courses. There are so many things like doing pit stops and how a race is unfolding. Coming from Atlantics where the races are much shorter and coming to IndyCar where the races are much longer and everything is bigger, you have to manage tires and manage yourself not to get tired. It will help me next year to be stronger.”

HVM Racing owner Keith Wiggins didn’t want the efforts of 2010 to go by the wayside, and the team now seeks to improve its financial foundation for the 17-race 2011 season. “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,” Wiggins said. “However, we could not also have anticipated the development of Simona in such a short period. The team and driver showed what is possible," adding, "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.”
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RHR Also Looking For Sponsorship in 2011

Postby mlittle » Thu Oct 07, 2010 7:55 am

Image
Although still a part of Andretti Autosport at the moment, Hunter-Reay's continued involvement with the team will depend on finding sponsorship for the 2011 season......


---Andretti Autosport announced today that it is in negotiations with multiple companies to assume the 2011 primary sponsorship of the IZOD IndyCar Series entry driven by Ryan Hunter-Reay.

IZOD served as primary sponsor with the team in 2010 and notified the team last week that it will not renew beyond its initial one-season contract. Recent media inquiries led to this clarification of Hunter-Reay's status with the team.

Fueled by a popular win at the Long Beach Grand Prix and runner-up finish in the season-opening race in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Hunter-Reay's breakthrough season grew from a scheduled three events to fulltime status when Andretti Autosport's sponsors rallied behind Hunter-Reay. His full-season effort resulted in three podiums, six top-five and 12 top-10 finishes.

Details of the ongoing negotiations will not be disclosed until the team's full sponsor lineup is announced at a later date.

After formally addressing Tony Kanaan's situation on Monday where 7-Eleven withdrew their funding, Andretti's John Lopes spoke on the Hunter-Reay situation.

"Andretti Autosport is grateful for the support provided by Phillips-Van Heusen while introducing Ryan Hunter-Reay as an instant fit within our organization. We notified our sponsor family late last week that Ryan's primary sponsorship was open for 2011 and 2012, and we have already received one offer. Putting together a proper full-season IndyCar budget these days typically takes multiple sponsor partners working together with the team and its fellow sponsors. Putting the puzzle together takes time, but Ryan may well be the most in-demand driver in our sport right now and we are fortunate that he brought all the right stuff to the team, and lots of key people noticed. We agreed to a new contract with Ryan the evening prior to this year's Indianapolis 500 and now it is the team's job to pull the details together quickly in order to put that contract into effect."
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Postby mlittle » Thu Oct 07, 2010 8:03 am

2011 Silly Season Update, 6 October 2010


Not even a week into Silly Season and three bits of news have crossed the wires........here's the current update:

CONFIRMED ENTRIES FOR 2011
--Team Penske(2): Will Power, Helio Castroneves
--Andretti Autosport(2): Marco Andretti, Danica Patrick
--Target/Ganassi Racing(2): Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti
--FAZZT Racing(1): Alex Tagliani
--HVM Racing(1): Simona de Silvestro
.....total number of confirmed seats: 8

EXPECTED TO RETURN IN 2011
--Andretti Autosport(1): Ryan Hunter-Reay
--Team Penske(1): Ryan Briscoe
--Conquest Racing(1): Bertrand Baguette
--A.J. Foyt Racing(1): Vitor Meira
--KV Racing Tech.(1): Takuma Sato
--Dreyer & Reinbold Racing(2): Mike Conway & Justin Wilson
--Sarah Fisher Racing(1): Sarah Fisher
.....total number of expected entries: 8

OPEN ENTRIES AT THE MOMENT
--Ganassi Satellite Team(1)
--Conquest Racing(1)
--KV Racing(1-2)
--Panther Racing(1-2)
--DeFerran/Dragon Racing(1)
--Dale Coyne Racing(1-2)
--Newman/Haas Racing(1-2)
--Walker Racing(1)
--Bryan Herta Autosport(1)
--Andretti Autosport(1)
....total number of open/uncertain 2011 entries: 10-14

.......drivers expected to change teams in 2011............
--Graham Rahal(Newman-Haas Racing)
--Paul Tracy(KV Racing Technology)
--Raphael Matos(DeFerran/Dragon Racing)
--Mario Moraes(KV Racing Technology)
--Dan Wheldon(Panther Racing)
--Alex Lloyd(Dale Coyne Racing)
--Hideki Mutoh(Newman-Haas Racing)
--Jay Howard(Sarah Fisher Racing)
--Tony Kanaan(Andretti Autosport)
........additional drivers of interest looking for seats in 2011..........
--J.R. Hildebrand
--Ana Beatriz
--Bruno Junquiera
--Oriol Servia
--J.K. Vernay
--Ed Carpenter
--E.J. Viso
--Townsend Bell
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Re: Andretti Autosport to Run Only 3 Cars in 2011

Postby mlittle » Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:56 am

mlittle wrote:
mlittle wrote:Mod's note...........I will try to find more info on this story as it will make a big effect on where the silly season chips fall.........


This evening's edition of The Speed Report on Speed Channel had a bombshell announcement as Andretti Autosport will no longer be a four-car team for 2011. According to Speed's Robin Miller, convenience store conglomerate 7-11 will no longer sponsor an IndyCar ride after 2010. As a result, the team has released 2004 series champion Tony Kanaan, who is now a free agent and whose presence will have an impact on silly season.

It is now safe to assume that the off-season rat race known as silly season has begun.......... :shock: :shock: :shock:

Andretti Autosport Confirms 7-11 Withdrawal

Quoting the article.............
7-Eleven, Inc. has notified Andretti Autosport that it will not continue in its role as the primary sponsor of the team's #11 IZOD IndyCar Series entry beyond 2010.

7-Eleven will maintain its position as an associate sponsor on the team's #7 IZOD IndyCar Series entry for 2011. Andretti Autosport is currently working to secure primary sponsorship for the #11 car, which has been driven by Tony Kanaan since 2003.

Andretti Autosport's John Lopes says the team hopes to find a replacement as Kanaan's primary sponsor to keep the 2004 series champion in the No. 11 car next year. "We are confirming today that 7-Eleven will not be returning as the primary sponsor of the 11 car next season. We are thankful for their many years of support and are proud of all we accomplished together. 7-Eleven will continue to be an associate sponsor of our team through an ongoing contract in support of Danica Patrick's GoDaddy.com car."

(Lopes added) "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. In the meantime and 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."
Speed Channel: Kanaan, Andretti Part Company
Image

One of the longest, most successful partnerships in IndyCar racing is over, at least for now, as Tony Kanaan and Andretti Autosport have parted company.

The popular 2004 champion couldn’t be guaranteed a ride after longtime sponsor 7-Eleven bailed a few weeks ago so he took a buyout and now he’s a free agent. “I don’t agree with some things and it’s very disappointing but I have no hard feelings,” said Kanaan, who joined a team then known as Andretti-Green in 2003 and proceeded to win 14 races and lead more than 2,600 laps. It’s sad because I wanted to be there. It’s been my home for nine years and I have a lot of great memories but it’s life, it’s reality, and now I’ve got to find a new home.”

Michael Andretti, who took over sole ownership of the team in 2009, issued the following statement: “It’s difficult to believe that Andretti Autosport and Tony Kanaan will no longer be competing together, but that is now the reality with the signing of this agreement. When 7-Eleven notified us that they would not be returning as primary sponsor, 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 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 2011.

“So today we agreed the best option for both Tony and our race team is to allow him the freedom to sign with another team. Personally, I want to thank him for all the effort and passion he shared with our team and I am proud of what we accomplished. He brought us our first pole, our first race win and our first championship. We wish Tony many wins in the future.”

John Lopes, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of Andretti Autosport, said every attempt was made to keep this combo intact. “We heard rumblings last summer that 7-Eleven was having business issues that would ultimately impact the sponsorship so we started working to restructure our deal with them,” said Lopes, who revealed that 7-Eleven will remain on Danica Patrick’s car as an associate sponsor. “We were shocked when they told us a few days before Homestead they were getting out but we felt we did everything we could to save the deal. And we also tried to help TK find a ride.”

The 35-year-old Brazilian who resides in Miami turned down an offer to drive for Chip Ganassi in the summer of 2008 to stay at AGR. “I’m still convinced it was the best choice for me and it wasn’t about money,” said Kanaan, whose bad luck at Indianapolis rivals Lloyd Ruby and Michael Andretti. “We had won three championships and two Indy 500s and it was the Big 3 with Penske, Ganassi and AGR. It’s easy now to say I was stupid but I was loyal to my team and that’s just the way I am.”

Justin Wilson and Kanaan are the top free agents in the IndyCar paddock and there are some decent seats available at KV Racing, Luczo/de Ferran and Newman/Haas. “I know some people might think they can’t afford me but I’m not looking for money right now, I’m looking for a competitive team where I can go and win races,” said Kanaan, who was scheduled to make $3 million in 2011, 2012 and 2013 with Andretti.

“You know it sounds crazy but if I get a good sponsor and bringing it back to Michael is my best option, that’s what I’ll do.”

Andretti received a double whammy when IndyCar title sponsor IZOD informed the team it would not sponsor Ryan Hunter-Reay in 2011, nor would ICM or Green Plains. And Meijer is also gone from the Indy-based team. “It’s difficult, for sure, but not as bad as 2007, even after winning the Indy500, when we lost Canadian Club, Jim Beam, Argent, Vonage and XM Satellite Radio in a single week – that was over $13 million,” said Lopes, who has GoDaddy returning with Patrick and Venom Energy Drink with Marco Andretti. I’m confident we’ll be a four-car team next year because I’m confident we will sell our way out of this. We’ve got 49 loyal sponsors associated with this team and that group, along with IZOD, helped keep Ryan on track in 2010. But we got blindsided by this deal and it’s a tough situation for TK and for us because he’s like family.”

Kanaan tried to put a positive spin on his situation. “I’m good on starts and restarts,” he said with a laugh. “Well, this is a restart, I just don’t know if I’m going low or high yet.”
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RHR Back With Andretti Autosport Through 2012

Postby mlittle » Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:15 am

Image

Ryan Hunter-Reay will have the personal luxury of stability and security through the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season. Hunter-Reay, who won the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach this year, has signed a two-year contract to remain with Andretti Autosport. Sponsorship will be announced soon, the team said.

"I couldn't be happier knowing my future is with Andretti Autosport,” said Hunter-Reay, who will join Andretti Autosport’s Marco Andretti in testing at Barber Motorsports Park on Oct. 30-31. "Starting the job in October, rather than in March, will be a luxury I've never had before. I look to become a title contender throughout the season."

Hunter-Reay, 29, joined Andretti Autosport this season after splitting seat time at Vision Racing and A.J. Foyt Racing in 2009. Primary sponsorship for Hunter-Reay’s car was extended twice, allowing the Florida resident to compete in all 17 races. He finished a career-high seventh in the championship standings with 12 top-10 finishes.

“In what looked to be just a partial 2010 season, this team worked incredibly hard to make the full season a reality and the results speak loudly of our potential together,” he said. “I cannot say enough about the professionalism of this team across the board, both competitively and from a commercial perspective.”

Hunter-Reay entered the IZOD IndyCar Series in 2007 with Rahal Letterman Racing at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in August and recorded his first victory in July 2008 at Watkins Glen International. Hunter-Reay has 28 top-10 finishes in 57 career starts.*

"As we prepare for 2011, I have strong relationships within the team to build on,” said Hunter-Reay, who agreed to terms of an agreement in May. “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.”

In addition to Marco Andretti, Danica Patrick is signed through the 2011 season. Both are race winners in the series, which kicks off the 2011 schedule March 27 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla.

"We're thrilled to be able to sign Ryan to a multi-year contract,” said Michael Andretti, chairman, president and CEO of Andretti Autosport. “He is a driver that has earned the right to have that kind of stability and we feel very fortunate to know that he will be a major piece of our foundation going forward.

"Ryan proved this year that he was the perfect choice to join our team. Not only did he substantially contribute to our engineering and set-up capabilities, he is a threat to win at every circuit we race on. We recognized early on that Ryan is that 'total package' both on and off the track and that is why we all worked so hard to keep Ryan for the full season this year.

"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."

*--Hunter-Reay's Career Indycar Win Tally............
2003:(1)--Surfers Paradise[American Spirit Racing]
2004:(1)--Milwaukee[Herdez Competition]
2008:(1)--Watkins Glen[Rahal-Letterman Racing]
2010:(1)--Long Beach[Andretti Autosport]
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Postby mlittle » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:30 pm

2011 Silly Season Update, 3 November 2010


CONFIRMED ENTRIES FOR 2011
--Team Penske(2): Will Power, Helio Castroneves
--Andretti Autosport(3): Marco Andretti, Danica Patrick, Ryan Hunter-Reay
--Target/Ganassi Racing(2): Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti
--FAZZT Racing(1): Alex Tagliani
--HVM Racing(1): Simona de Silvestro
.....total number of confirmed seats: 9

EXPECTED TO RETURN IN 2011
--Team Penske(1): Ryan Briscoe
--Conquest Racing(1): Bertrand Baguette
--A.J. Foyt Racing(1): Vitor Meira
--KV Racing Tech.(1): Takuma Sato
--Dreyer & Reinbold Racing(2): Mike Conway & Justin Wilson
--Sarah Fisher Racing(1): Sarah Fisher
.....total number of expected entries: 7

OPEN ENTRIES AT THE MOMENT
--Ganassi Satellite Team(1)
--Conquest Racing(1)
--KV Racing(1-2)
--Panther Racing(1-2)
--DeFerran/Dragon Racing(1)
--Dale Coyne Racing(1-2)
--Newman/Haas Racing(1-2)
--Walker Racing(1)
--Bryan Herta Autosport(1)
--Andretti Autosport(1)
....total number of open/uncertain 2011 entries: 10-14

.......drivers expected to change teams in 2011............
--Graham Rahal(Newman-Haas Racing)
--Paul Tracy(KV Racing Technology)
--Raphael Matos(DeFerran/Dragon Racing)
--Mario Moraes(KV Racing Technology)
--Dan Wheldon(Panther Racing)
--Alex Lloyd(Dale Coyne Racing)
--Hideki Mutoh(Newman-Haas Racing)

........additional drivers of interest looking for seats in 2011..........
--Tony Kanaan
--Jay Howard
--J.R. Hildebrand
--Ana Beatriz
--Bruno Junquiera
--Oriol Servia
--J.K. Vernay
--Ed Carpenter
--E.J. Viso
--Townsend Bell
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Wilson Re-Signs With DRR For 2011

Postby mlittle » Fri Nov 12, 2010 10:13 am

Image

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing announced that British driver Justin Wilson has re-signed with the team for the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series season. DRR and Wilson had a very successful first season together this year. The team/driver duo earned two podium results with runner-up finishes at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg and The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. They also earned six top-10 finishes and captured pole position at the Honda Indy Toronto.

"We created a lot of momentum in 2010 with Justin and we plan on continuing that next year with him as one of our full-time drivers. Justin's a class act and we couldn't be happier to have him back as part of our DRR family in 2011," commented Dennis Reinbold, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Co-Owner.

Wilson will be joining the Indianapolis-based squad for a consecutive season. The Brit's success in open-wheel racing includes two back-to-back runner-up finishes in the 2006-2007 Champ Car World Series, along with four wins and six poles. He turned heads again in his debut in the 2008 IndyCar Series by earning his first victory at the Raceway at Belle Isle in Michigan. Wilson finished the season 11th overall. That momentum would carry into the 2009 season when he made the move to Dale Coyne Racing, giving the team its first win. He recorded three top-five and seven top-10 finishes, started from the front row at three road/street course events and led a total of 129 laps, finishing the season 9th in the overall championship.

"It's really exciting to be back with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing. We put some strong foundations in place in 2010 and we've got big ambitions for 2011. Agreeing on things early means we can work hard on building our program during the off-season and hit the ground running next year," stated Wilson. Feeling the same enthusiasm as the rest is co-owner Robbie Buhl. "We are very excited to have Justin back. We're looking forward to building on 2010 and creating consistency on and off the track in 2011," said Buhl.
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Postby mlittle » Fri Nov 12, 2010 10:17 am

2011 Silly Season Update, 11 November 2010



CONFIRMED ENTRIES FOR 2011
--Team Penske(2): Will Power, Helio Castroneves
--Andretti Autosport(3): Marco Andretti, Danica Patrick, Ryan Hunter-Reay
--Target/Ganassi Racing(2): Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti
--FAZZT Racing(1): Alex Tagliani
--HVM Racing(1): Simona de Silvestro
--Dreyer & Reinbold(1): Justin Wilson
.....total number of confirmed seats: 10

EXPECTED TO RETURN IN 2011
--Team Penske(1): Ryan Briscoe
--Conquest Racing(1): Bertrand Baguette
--A.J. Foyt Racing(1): Vitor Meira
--KV Racing Tech.(1): Takuma Sato
--Dreyer & Reinbold Racing(1): Mike Conway
--Sarah Fisher Racing(1): Sarah Fisher
.....total number of expected entries: 6

OPEN ENTRIES AT THE MOMENT
--Ganassi Satellite Team(1)
--Conquest Racing(1)
--KV Racing(1-2)
--Panther Racing(1-2)
--DeFerran/Dragon Racing(1)
--Dale Coyne Racing(1-2)
--Newman/Haas Racing(1-2)
--Walker Racing(1)
--Bryan Herta Autosport(1)
--Andretti Autosport(1)
....total number of open/uncertain 2011 entries: 10-14

.......drivers expected to change teams in 2011............
--Graham Rahal(Newman-Haas Racing)
--Paul Tracy(KV Racing Technology)
--Raphael Matos(DeFerran/Dragon Racing)
--Mario Moraes(KV Racing Technology)
--Dan Wheldon(Panther Racing)
--Alex Lloyd(Dale Coyne Racing)
--Hideki Mutoh(Newman-Haas Racing)

........additional drivers of interest looking for seats in 2011..........
--Tony Kanaan
--Jay Howard
--J.R. Hildebrand
--Ana Beatriz
--Bruno Junquiera
--Oriol Servia
--J.K. Vernay
--Ed Carpenter
--E.J. Viso
--Townsend Bell
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Rahal Headed To Ganassi?

Postby mlittle » Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:33 pm

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Target/Ganassi Racing could be expanding; reports are that the team is close to signing former Newman-Haas pilot Graham Rahal for 2011


One of the ideal situations for IndyCar would be to have one of its brightest young talents driving for one of the best teams. And it appears that's a distinct possibility for 2011. In what would be a win/win for the principals and the series, SPEED's resident open-wheel majordomo, Robin Miller, has learned that Chip Ganassi is close to signing a deal to run Graham Rahal in a third team in 2011 with Target/Ganassi personnel and utilizing all the resources of an operation that's captured three consecutive championships, two of the last three Indianapolis 500s and won 28 of the last 68 races.

The 21-year-old second generation driver bounced around with four teams in 2010 following an impressive '09 season but scored a major sponsorship from TBC Retail Group. Rahal drove in the colors of NTB, a subsidiary of TBC, at Mid-Ohio earlier this year.

Ganassi, who swept the two biggest plumbs in open wheel this past season when Dario Franchitti won Indy and then snatched the title in the last race, is also considering a second new car for Indy Lights veteran Charlie Kimball as young Rahal's teammate.

The Target team of two-time IndyCar champ Scott Dixon and three-time king Franchitti will remain separately housed on Indy's northwest side and be independent of the new entity. Since Don "The Snake" Prudomme is a friend of Ganassi's and attended the last couple races, the speculation is that the Rahal team could be housed in the drag racing legend's shop in nearby Brownsburg, Ind.

Ganassi's last American driver to run full-time in open-wheel was Jeff Ward in 2002 in the IRL. He was preceded by Memo Gidley in CART in 2001 and Jimmy Vasser, who won the first of four consecutive CART titles in 1996.
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Pennzoil & Penske in 2011?

Postby mlittle » Fri Nov 26, 2010 6:18 am

Speed Channel: Pennzoil and Penske in 2011?


If Speed's Marshall Pruett is correct on this one(and like Speed's major-domo Robin Miller he usually is.....) then one of motorsports' iconic sponsors is set to return to IndyCar beginning in 2011. 8)
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Postby mlittle » Fri Nov 26, 2010 6:25 am

Silly Season Update, 25 November 2010



CONFIRMED ENTRIES FOR 2011
--Team Penske(3): Will Power, Helio Castroneves, Ryan Briscoe
--Andretti Autosport(3): Marco Andretti, Danica Patrick, Ryan Hunter-Reay
--Target/Ganassi Racing(2): Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti
--FAZZT Racing(1): Alex Tagliani
--HVM Racing(1): Simona de Silvestro
--Dreyer & Reinbold(1): Justin Wilson
--Ganassi Satellite Team(2): Graham Rahal, Charlie Kimball
.....total number of confirmed seats: 13

EXPECTED TO RETURN IN 2011
--Conquest Racing(1): Bertrand Baguette
--A.J. Foyt Racing(1): Vitor Meira
--KV Racing Tech.(2): Takuma Sato, Paul Tracy
--Dreyer & Reinbold Racing(1): Mike Conway
--Sarah Fisher Racing(1): Sarah Fisher
.....total number of expected entries: 6

OPEN ENTRIES AT THE MOMENT
--FAZZT Racing(1)
--Conquest Racing(1)
--KV Racing(1)
--Panther Racing(1-2)
--DeFerran/Dragon Racing(1)
--Dale Coyne Racing(1-2)
--Newman/Haas Racing(1-2)
--Walker Racing(1)
--Bryan Herta Autosport(1)
--Andretti Autosport(1)
--Highcroft Racing(1)
....total number of open/uncertain 2011 entries: 10-14

.......drivers expected to change teams in 2011............
--Raphael Matos(DeFerran/Dragon Racing)
--Mario Moraes(KV Racing Technology)
--Dan Wheldon(Panther Racing)
--Alex Lloyd(Dale Coyne Racing)
--Hideki Mutoh(Newman-Haas Racing)

........additional drivers of interest looking for seats in 2011..........
--Tony Kanaan
--Jay Howard
--J.R. Hildebrand
--Ana Beatriz
--Bruno Junquiera
--Oriol Servia
--J.K. Vernay
--Ed Carpenter
--E.J. Viso
--Townsend Bell
--Ho-Pin Tung
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Carpenter to Race For SFR as Fisher Retires From Racing.....

Postby mlittle » Tue Nov 30, 2010 6:13 pm

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After over a decade as an Indycar driver, SFR principal Sarah Fisher will step out of the cockpit, retiring from the sport for the time being.......


Sarah Fisher Racing (SFR) and Dollar General announced today that Dollar General has renewed its support of SFR for the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series season. The schedule will include competition in nine events, consisting of both road course and oval venues. "SFR has been a great partner for us and our brand," said Rick Dreiling, Dollar General's chairman and CEO. "We are excited about extending our sponsorship for the upcoming racing season."

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Considered one of the sport's top oval racers, Ed Carpenter will drive the #67 Dollar General entry for Sarah Fisher Racing in 2011

Sarah Fisher also announced today that after 25 years in the driver's seat, she will be stepping out of the car to focus on being a team owner. Well-known IZOD IndyCar Series driver Ed Carpenter will take the wheel of the yellow, No. 67, Dollar General machine.

"This change in my career is a direction I have been thinking about very hard. The timing is perfect for the strategy of SFR in its future endeavors. To have the support of all our partners in this direction is incredible. I am glad to have the support of our partners, including Dollar General, who have led us to where we are today. I know this team has what it takes to perform and I am hoping with the decision to put Edin the seat, that we can do just that. By stepping out of the seat, I will be able to spend more time growing this team in the right directions both on and off track."

Carpenter, the new driver of the Dollar General No. 67, is an Indiana native who began his racing career in 1989 driving cars such as sprint cars, midgets, and silver crown cars on the short tracks of America. This background, which is very similar to SFR team owner, Sarah Fisher, was what started the friendship between Carpenter and Fisher. He has captured a pole position, two podium finishes, and has claimed 26 top-ten results thus far in his IZOD IndyCar Series career.

"Sarah is a trailblazer and remains a role model," said Dreiling. "We are proud of her record and we wish her well as she starts her career as a full-time owner. We also look forward to cheering on Ed as he drives the Dollar General car to victory."

"I am so honored to have the opportunity to come drive for SFR and Dollar General," said an enthusiastic Carpenter. "I have been friends with Sarah and Andy for a long time, and am really looking forward to working with their team. Sarah and I come from such similar backgrounds; I know that it will be a joy to work with her team. Sarah has had a great career and has done an amazing job growing SFR each year. I am confident that together we can continue to improve the results not only on the track, but off of the track as well!"

SFR's complete 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series schedule:
March 28 Streets of St. Petersburg, FL
May 29 Indianapolis Motor Speedway
June 11 Texas Motor Speedway
June 25 Iowa Speedway
August 7 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
August 14 New Hampshire Motor Speedway
September 4 Streets of Baltimore
October 2 Kentucky Speedway
October 16 Las Vegas Motor Speedway
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