News for the Month of November 2017

INDYCAR announces it will NOT race in Mexico City in ’18 – “INDYCAR announced today that discussions regarding a Verizon IndyCar Series race in Mexico City are continuing, but that the proposed event will not be added to the 2018 schedule. Future talks will focus on plans to host this event at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez road course as early as 2019.” Full release at the link. – INDYCAR – (11/30/2017)

Hulman-George family statement on passing of Jim Nabors – “Jim Nabors was such a kind, caring man, and we will miss him greatly. Jim was born in Alabama, but he became a Hoosier to all of us almost immediately after he began his superb performances of ‘Back Home Again in Indiana’ starting in 1972. He loved coming back home to the Speedway almost every May for more than 40 years and seeing his friends and race fans, who loved him dearly. Jim was not only a treasured friend, but truly a cherished member of our family. We will never forget his genuine kindness, sincerity and loyalty. He was wonderful man who inspired millions of people across the globe every May and throughout his entire life.” Full release at the link. – IMS – (11/30/2017)

Jim Nabors passes away at 87 – WTHR’s Dave Calabro reports legend of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race Jim Nabors passed away at the age of 87. More at the link. – WTHR – (11/30/2017)

PIR to honor 25th anniversary of Mario’s final win – “Phoenix Raceway will celebrate the 25th anniversary of Mario Andretti’s final career win with a special reunion weekend April 6-7, 2018 for the Verizon IndyCar Series Phoenix Grand Prix. As the stars of IndyCar take over the track in Saturday night’s Phoenix Grand Prix, the weekend will be filled with events celebrating Andretti as one of racing’s most iconic and renowned racing legends, as well as Phoenix Raceway’s rich open-wheel history. The event will be highlighted by a reunion of the drivers who participated in the 1993 IndyCar race that culminated in Andretti’s last open-wheel victory, while racing for the legendary Newman/Haas Racing team. Fans can interact with legends of the sport such as Bobby Rahal, Lyn St. James, and Arie Luydendyk Sr. in a panel discussion and autograph session.” Full release at the link. – PIR – (11/30/2017)

Brian Barnhart named President of Harding Racing – “Brian Barnhart has been named President of Harding Racing, effective December 18, 2017. Barnhart, will be based at the Harding Racing corporate office in Indianapolis, Indiana…Barnhart’s tenure in the operational side of INDYCAR began in 1997 where he served in various roles, most recently as Vice President of Competition and Head of Race Control. Prior to his move to INDYCAR, Barnhart spent several years as a crew member for multiple race teams including Al Unser Jr.’s winning teams.” Full release at the link. – Harding Racing – (11/29/2017)

Miller’s Mailbag 11/29/17 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (11/29/2017)

Trackside podcast 11/28/17 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 11/28/17 is a great listen as always. Oliver Askew, David Malsher, and Jade Gurss are guests on the show. – 1070 The Fan – (11/29/2017)

Mazda announces Pigot will drive for team at Rolex 24 at Daytona – Mazda announced this morning that Spencer Pigot will drive one of the team’s prototype entries at the Rolex 24 at Daytona in January. – Mazda Motorsports – (11/28/2017)

INDYCAR held recent meetings for third manufacturer – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports INDYCAR continues to work behind the scenes to add a third engine manufacturer for the Verizon IndyCar Series. “I think the topic of bringing in a third manufacturer does have some momentum behind it,” INDYCAR president of competition Jay Frye told RACER. “Since the season ended, we’ve organized meetings with some prospects and had some follow-up meetings with manufacturers we’d met with before. The good news is they’re paying attention to what we’re doing and have a lot of curiosity in what we’re doing.” Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/28/2017)

Borg-Warner Trophy to make first overseas trip in Japan – RACER’s Mark Glendenning has a full report on the Borg-Warner Trophy heading to Japan with Takuma Sato this week. “We are very happy that the Borg-Warner Trophy is traveling to Japan later this week as part of Honda Racing THANKS DAY at Twin Ring Motegi,” HPD President Art St Cyr told RACER. Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/28/2017)

Fernandez says INDYCAR needs full-time Mexican driver for successful Mexican return – AUTOSPORT’s David Malsher reports Adrian Fernandez believes INDYCAR needs a full-time Mexican driver in the Verizon IndyCar Series in order to have a successful return to Mexico as discussions continue about a race at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in August 2018. Full story at the link. – AUTOSPORT – (11/27/2017)

INDYCAR to supply two free aero kits to ’18 full-time teams – AUTOSPORT’s Tom Errington reports INDYCAR will supply two of the new universal aero kits to each full-time team in the Verizon IndyCar Series in 2018. “When IndyCar undertook the process of creating the universal kit that makes our cars sleeker, safer and racier, we also worked hard to make sure it would be cost-effective to our teams,” said INDYCAR president of competition and operations Jay Frye. Full story at the link. – AUTOSPORT – (11/24/2017)

Miller’s Mailbag 11/22/17 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (11/22/2017)

Trackside podcast 11/21/17 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 11/21/17 is a great listen as always. Larry Foyt is a guest on the show. – 1070 The Fan – (11/22/2017)

Penske announces extension with DXC Technology for No. 22 car – “Team Penske announced today that it has reached an extension agreement with DXC Technology (NYSE: DXC) for the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season. In its first season as a motorsports sponsor in 2017, DXC Technology built on an established presence with Team Penske’s successful Verizon IndyCar Series program and 2016 series champion Simon Pagenaud, driver of the No. 22 Dallara/Chevrolet.” Full release at the link. – Team Penske – (11/21/2017)

Andretti Autosport sued by bankrupt HHGregg for sponsorship money – The Indianapolis Business Journal reports Andretti Autosport is being sued for the return of sponsorship money as part of the HHGregg bankruptcy case. “A group representing the unsecured creditors of HHGregg has filed suit against Andretti Autosport in an attempt to claw back nearly $1.5 million in sponsorship money the now-defunct retailer paid the racing team in the months leading up to its bankruptcy. The suit was filed Friday by the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Gregg Appliances Inc., which was formed in March to recover what are known as “preferential payments” to creditors.” Full story at the link. – IBJ – (11/20/2017)

Danica confirms she’s retired from racing full-time and will drive in ’18 Indy 500 – “Following Sunday’s race in Homestead, Danica plans to step away from full-time competition. While Danica may not be competing on a weekly basis next year, we are thrilled to share with you that she will be doing the “Danica Double” and will be a part of the 60th running of the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway in February and the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May.” Full release at the link. – – (11/17/2017)

Report: Danica “exploring a plan” to race in ’18 Indy 500 – USA Today’s A.J. Perez reports Danica Patrick is working on her 2018 plans, as her NASCAR contract with Stewart-Haas Racing finishes after Sunday’s race, and she’s exploring the possibility of racing in both the Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500 Mile Race. Full story at the link. – USA Today – (11/17/2017)

“Lights at the Brickyard” opens at IMS on 11/17 – “Lights at the Brickyard, the popular, drive-through holiday display that debuted last year at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, will return from Nov. 17 through Dec. 30 this year with a longer route and over 2.5 million bright lights illuminating an expanded lineup of colorful displays. The Lights at the Brickyard course will expand to more than 2 miles from last year’s 1.7 mile layout. As in 2016, the route—which travels through the IMS infield and along the front stretch of the historic oval—will cross the world-famous Yard of Bricks start-finish line.” Full release at the link. – IMS – (11/17/2017)

Robin Miller diagnosed with bone cancer – From 1070 The Fan’s Tony Donohue: “Our good friend Robin Miller has a treatable form of bone cancer. He will undergo stem cell in a few weeks. Good news/bad news.” Listen to Miller talk about his situation in a radio interview here. – Tony Donohue – (11/17/2017)

Foyt announces Leist as driver of No. 4 for ’18 – “Matheus Leist, the 19-year-old Brazilian, will drive A.J. Foyt’s No. 4 ABC Supply Chevrolet in the Verizon IndyCar Series next year.” Full release at the link. – AJ Foyt Racing – (11/16/2017)

Telitz pays self-imposed carbon tax based on ’17 Lights driving – NBC Sports’ Tony DiZinno reports Indy Lights rookie Aaron Telitz paid a self-imposed carbon tax on himself for his time spent on track during the 2017 Indy Lights season. “For me to be an advocate, you have to put your money where your mouth is,” Telitz told NBC Sports. “I’m driving a racecar operating on high-powered fuel. There’s a place for racing even in a world while we’re trying to erase CO2 emissions.” Full story at the link. – NBC Sports – (11/16/2017)

Hinch believes ’18 aero kit will expose poor mechanical setups – David Malsher has a great report for AUTOSPORT on how James Hinchcliffe believes the different downforce of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series universal aero kit will expose teams with poor mechanical setups. “As we take downforce away, teams with a superior mechanical package are going to rise to the top,” Hinchcliffe told AUTOSPORT. “If you’ve been using downforce as a crutch in the past then you’re not going to have that anymore.” Full story at the link. – AUTOSPORT – (11/16/2017)

Miller’s Mailbag 11/15/17 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (11/15/2017)

Trackside podcast 11/14/17 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 11/14/17 is a great listen as always. Zach Veach and Leigh Diffey are guests on the show. – 1070 The Fan – (11/15/2017)

Report: Proposed Nashville race no longer being pursued by city officials – Joey Garrison of the Tennessean reports Nashville city officials are no longer working with the promoters of a proposed Grand Prix of Nashville that was aiming to take place in Downtown Nashville, Tennessee in 2019. “In the end, we just felt like there were just too many unanswered questions, especially in regards to the needed infrastructure and, quite honestly, just how do we work around this city’s vigorous special events schedule” Metro Sports Authority Director Monica Fawknotson told the local sports authority board on Tuesday. Full story at the link. – Tennessean – (11/14/2017)

St. Pete tickets on sale on 11/15 – “Three-day tickets for the 2018 Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg go on sale tomorrow (November 15) at 10 a.m. EST at or by phone at 877-725-8849. The 14th edition of this annual racing festival returns to the downtown streets and picturesque waterfront of St. Petersburg, Fla., March 9-11. Renewal customers have until 9 p.m. EST tonight (November 14) to renew their same three-day grandstand seats as last year.” Full release at the link. – GPSTPETE – (11/14/2017)

Juncos Racing prioritizing expanding Kaiser effort over second car – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports Juncos Racing is working hard to expand upon Kyle Kaiser’s four race deal to race in the Verizon IndyCar Series before working on adding a second car or program. “For me, it’s about working with Kyle and the team,” owner Ricardo Juncos told RACER. “That’s what we want to do, and he and the team deserve that. So that means we will work to find more sponsors to run him for more races than the four.” Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/13/2017)

Kimball “confident” he’ll be in IndyCar in ’18 – The Indianapolis Star’s Jim Ayello has a great piece on Charlie Kimball’s progress towards a full-time deal in the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series. “The rational, logical part of me, looking at all the factors, I’d put it at north of 90 percent,” Kimball told the Star. “But that emotional part of me is afraid of something going wrong, and knows nothing is done until I show up at the race track and climb in the car. But I’m very bullish and very confident — and I have been through this whole offseason — that a program’s going to happen.” Full story at the link. – Indianapolis Star – (11/13/2017)

IMS announces date/time for end of season sale – “Race fans can get a turbocharged start to their holiday shopping at the 2017 End of Season Sale on Saturday, Nov. 18 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, with great deals available on a wide variety of IMS and INDYCAR apparel, collectibles and more. The sale features the lowest prices of the season and is open to the public from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. (ET) on the Fourth Floor of the IMS Media Center, located next to the Pagoda in the IMS infield. Customers should enter the track through Gate 2 and follow signs and directions to the Media Center.” Full release at the link. – IMS – (11/10/2017)

RLL shifts staff roles for two-car effort – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports Graham Rahal’s race engineer Eddie Jones will shift to the No. 16 car for Takuma Sato for the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season now that Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing will be a two-car effort. Tom German will take over as Graham Rahal’s race engineer. “Working with Eddie as my engineer has been amazing; since he came onboard, we’ve become a powerhouse team with just one car,” Graham Rahal told RACER. “Dad and [team manager] Rico [Nault] thought we were in a good enough place where we could have Eddie work with Takuma, and Tom engineer my car, and that together, it was the smartest way to get the best out of becoming a two-car team again.” Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/9/2017)

SPM announces staff additions – “Schmidt Peterson Motorsports announced today additions to its staff in its crew, technical and commercial departments. Strengthening the current engineering staff is Todd Malloy who joins the team as Technical Director, while Eric Pinkham has signed on as Vice President, Partner Strategy for the Indianapolis-based team.” Full release at the link. – SPM – (11/8/2017)

Miller’s Mailbag 11/8/17 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (11/8/2017)

Report: SPM/Calmels/Gommendy Indy 500 deal in jeopardy – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports the previously announced partnership between Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Didier Calmels to run Tristan Gommendy in the SPM No. 77 in the 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race is now in jeopardy. There has been significant backlash against the deal due to Calmels’ troublesome past (he spend time in prison for murdering his wife). “There might be a very competitive third Schmidt Peterson Honda available for Indy,” SPM owner Sam Schmidt told RACER. Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/8/2017)

Trackside podcast 11/6/17 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 11/6/17 is a great listen as always. Graham Rahal and Tony DiZinno are guests on the show. – 1070 The Fan – (11/7/2017)

Sato meets President Trump in Tokyo – Takuma Sato was a guest of Japan’s prime minister at a banquet in Tokyo honoring President Donald Trump’s visit to Japan. Sato was able to meet the President at the event. Full story at the link. – INDYCAR – (11/7/2017)

INDYCAR mulling tire allotment changes – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports INDYCAR is considering allowing rookie drivers and those outside the Top 10 in points to receive an extra set of tires to use in practice. Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/7/2017)

Report: Dampers to remain open for development – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports dampers will remain open for development in the Verizon IndyCar Series next year. “We had a year-end team manager meeting a few weeks ago, gave them some pre-meeting homework to complete and compiled it all for the meeting, and in it, we went through 50 topics,” INDYCAR competition president Jay Frye told RACER. “We asked for their input, and from that homework, we looked at a lot of things coming out of the current season and next season, and one of the items was that there will be no changes to the dampers in 2018.” Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/6/2017)

Daly pushing for DCR/ECR openings –’s David Malsher reports Conor Daly is working hard to land one of the available rides at Dale Coyne Racing or Ed Carpenter Racing. “I’ve spoken with both Dale and Ed, and the reality is that either situation would be great. But this late in the offseason, the only seats left are going to require a good chunk of funding,” Daly told “My only mission now is to try and bring financial support together and then see what happens.” Full story at the link. – – (11/3/2017)

Claman De Melo in play for DCR opening – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports Zachary Claman De Melo is one of the drivers in discussions with Dale Coyne Racing for their open seat alongside Sebastien Bourdais. “I’ve had positive meetings, I don’t know if we’re close to the full budget yet, and it really depends on how the next meetings go,” Claman De Melo told RACER. Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/3/2017)

Penske announces Newgarden will run No. 1 in ’18 – Team Penske announced in an entertaining video on social media that Josef Newgarden will drive the No. 1 car in the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series as the defending champion. Check it out at the link. – Team Penske – (11/1/2017)

Kimball edging closer to ’18 IndyCar deal – RACER’s Marshall Pruett has a nice report on Charlie Kimball’s status to race in the Verizon IndyCar Series in 2018. “Things are coming along well, and I have a lot of confidence in the plans that are coming together right now,” Kimball told RACER. “There is nothing signed, sealed, or delivered; it’s not there yet. I’d like things to move faster than they are, but I’m a racecar driver, so I always want things to move faster. We’re hoping to be in a position to announce something soon, but ‘imminent’ would be overstating things.” Full story at the link. – RACER – (11/1/2017)

Dixon happy with the arrival of Jones –’s David Malsher reports Scott Dixon is happy to have 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year Ed Jones as a teammate at Chip Ganassi Racing Teams in 2018. “I think it’s pretty refreshing that Chip has signed Ed, someone who’s not a rookie,” Dixon told “OK, Ed’s only had one year in IndyCar but that means he’s been to all the tracks [aside from Portland], he’s been to Indy 500 and gone through that whole two-week process and ended up with a strong finish.” Full story at the link. – – (11/1/2017)

Miller’s Mailbag 11/1/17 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (11/1/2017)

Trackside podcast 10/30/17 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 10/30/17 is a great listen as always. Ed Jones, Jim Leo, and Donald Davidson are guests on the show. – 1070 The Fan – (10/31/2017)

Pruett silly season update 10/30/17 – RACER’s Marshall Pruett has posted an interesting silly season update as of 10/30/17. Check it out at the link. – RACER – (10/31/2017)

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