2019 Indy Lights Silly Season Synopsis
From one season to the next, the Road to Indy is never short of changes as there are always drivers looking to climb the ranks with a goal of achieving the goal of being in the IndyCar Series one day.
The 2019 campaign will be no different for Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, so let’s review where things stand as of January 10, 2019.
ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT: After entering four entries throughout last season, there is a lot of flux right now after their drivers finished one-two (Patricio O’Ward and Colton Herta) and moved up to the IndyCar Series.
The team has confirmed that Ryan Norman will be back for his third campaign in Indy Lights, ready to chase after a series title after scoring his first career victory at Gateway Motorsports Park.
“I’m really excited for this season,” he told POPULAR OPEN WHEEL. “I’ve built a lot of experience over the past two years with Andretti in the Indy Lights Series and I feel coming into this season, I am definitely going to be a lot stronger and consistent then we have been, and I feel like we have a pretty good shot at the championship.”
Additionally, Dalton Kellett will also return after partnering with Partners Driving STEM to bring STEM awareness to open-wheel racing in his third season of competition. He placed seventh in last year’s standings.
BELARDI AUTO RACING: It is safe to say that last year did not go as intended for Belardi Auto Racing with drivers Santiago Urrutia and Aaron Telitz.
As they look to rebound, they have elected to put Zachary Claman De Melo behind the wheel in one of their entries. The Canadian spent last year racing in the IndyCar Series, making nine starts for Dale Coyne Racing. With a season-best 12th-place finish, it’s safe to say the added experience in the Road to Indy wouldn’t hurt.
It has yet to be announced whether Urrutia or Telitz will be back in the fold.
JUNCOS RACING: There will once again be at least one full-time entry from Juncos Racing, as they announced Rinus Veekay will be running all of the races. He gets his chance at the top step of the Road to Indy after winning the Indy Pro 2000 (previously Pro Mazda) Championship Presented by Cooper Tires last year.
Victor Franzoni’s future remains uncertain, especially after Ricardo Juncos told Motorsport.com in August that having two entries would be hard to do.
TEAM PELFRY: With only entering three events last year, the focus for Team Pelfry became the second step of the Road to Indy, the Indy Pro 2000 Championship. It is unclear whether they will be back in Indy Lights for 2019 at this time.
CARLIN RACING: After pulling out of Indy Lights competition to focus on their IndyCar Series endeavor, Trevor Carlin told Motorsport.com in September that he was ready to revive the team for 2019. The plan also included a mention of having a pair of entries.
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