Missing from the opening three rounds of the season, Oriol Servia and Rahal Letterman Racing have announced that they will team up for an assault on the Indianapolis 500.
The revelation, while expected for some time, comes with just two days of practice remaining before this weekend's final qualifying session, but both team and driver are confident that they can both make the cut and survive Bump Day.
"We all know it's not ideal to jump in the car for Thursday and Friday," said Servia, who will drive the #17 RLR entry with backing from cyber terrorism experts DAFCA, "but we have two days to prepare for qualifying and one for the race."
Servia finished ninth overall in the IndyCar Series following unification last year, recording seven top ten results with KV Racing Technology. He finished eleventh at Indianapolis.
"I've been going to every race, and I'm totally committed to this series," Servia said of his attempts to remain active in the IRL, "I feel like I'm on top of my game, and I think I showed that last year.
"Now I'm really happy to get the opportunity to be with such a team. Rahal Letterman has a lot of experience here, and they did really well in the past. I have raced many years against them, and it makes me very proud to be finally part of it. Maybe a last-minute deal like this for Indy will be a formula to success this year."
Rahal Letterman won the 2004 Indianapolis 500 with Buddy Rice and fielded cars for Chase Rookies of the Year Danica Patrick in 2005 and Ryan Hunter-Reay in 2008. Unable to find the sponsorship required to field a full-time entry in the 2009 IndyCar Series, it nevertheless remained committed to returning to the Brickyard and had been linked with Servia for several weeks.
"We have worked very hard all year in order to put this programme together, and we feel like we have a package that will allow us to go to Indy and perform well," said co-owner Bobby Rahal.
"The team's experience, combined with a veteran talent like Oriol, should give us everything we need to be competitive throughout the event. We are extremely pleased to welcome DAFCA to the RLR family and look forward to giving them a great experience in their first visit to Indy."