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Hunter-Reay stays, Kanaan out at Andretti

Andretti Autosports announces that veteran Tony Kanaan is to leave the team, as Ryan Hunter-Reay is signed to a two-year deal alongside Marco Andretti and Danica Patrick.
Tony Kanaan is leaving Andretti Autosports after the team officially declared him a free agent, and formally released him to chase other opportunities.

But the team is re-signing Ryan Hunter-Reay, in a deal that will see him drive with the team through to the end of 2012.

Hunter-Reay, 29, joined the team this season, winning the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach and finishing 7th overall, after dividing time between Vision Racing and AJ Foyt Racing in 2009. Initially the deal for this year was for only part of the season but Michael Andretti was able to find enough funding to extend it and now to ink a two year deal, despite the news that primary sponsor IZOD was reducing its backing.

"I couldn't be happier knowing my future is with Andretti Autosport," said Hunter-Reay. "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."

"We're thrilled to be able to sign Ryan to a multi-year contract,” said team boss Michael Andretti. "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." Andretti added that he is close to announcing a sponsor to replace IZOD on Hunter-Reay's car

The deal means Hunter-Reay lines up alongside Marco Andretti and Danica Patrick, leaving insufficient sponsorship to allow the team to continue running Tony Kanaan as well. "It is difficult to believe that Andretti Autosport and Tony Kanaan will no longer be competing together, but that is now a reality with the signing of this agreement," said Andretti.

"Given the timing of that notification, we felt it was important to give Tony the freedom to review his options outside of Andretti Autosport," Andretti continued in a statement released by the team. "We did not want to prevent him from furthering his career in the event we could not arrive at a reasonable solution for him for 2011."

Although Kanaan echoed the thanks and praise back to the team, he was clearly less than entirely happy with the situation:"I don't agree with some things and it's very disappointing but I have no hard feelings," he told speedtv.com. "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."



Related Pictures

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Indy Racing League.  July 31-Aug. !, 2009. Kentucky Speedway. Sparta, Ky. USA. Tony Kanaan resting in car before practice.
Chevrolet sweeps the podium with winner Mike Conway (center), driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka / Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrating his victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the second of two IndyCar Series races through the streets of Exhibition Place, in Toronto, Canada. Tony Kanaan (left), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet celebrates his second-place finish. Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet celebrates his third-place finish. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Mike Conway, driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka / Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag while racing to victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the second of two IndyCar Series races through the streets of Exhibition Place, in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Mike Conway, Tony Kanaan and Will Power celebrate on the podium after the second round of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader on Sunday July 20 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Mike Conway, Tony Kanaan and Will Power pose for a selfie on the podium after the second round of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader on Sunday July 20 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan and Will Power pose for a selfie on the podium after the second round of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader on Sunday July 20 2014. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Chevy Racing sweeps the podium with race winner Sebastien Bourdais (center), driver of the #11 Hydroxycut KVC Racing Technology Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrating his victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the first of two IndyCar Series races in Toronto, Canada. Second-place finisher Helio Castroneves (left), driver of the #3 PPV Automotive Refinish Team Penske Chevrolet, and third-place finisher Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, join the celebration. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Sebastien Bourdais, driver of the #11 Hydroxycut KVC Racing Technology Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag, racing to victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the first of two IndyCar Series races through the streets of Exhibition Place, in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Sebastien Bourdais, driver of the #11 Hydroxycut KVC Racing Technology Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Sunday, July 20, 2014 during the first of two IndyCar Series races through the streets of Exhibition Place, in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Rain drops on a space nose cone for Ryan Hunter-Reay`s car (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, races to a third-place finish Saturday, July 12, 2014 at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V6, takes over the championship points lead with an eighth-place finish. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races teammate Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 TNT Energy Drink Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, Saturday, July 12, 2014 at the Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. Dixon won the pole and finished in fourth-place. Kanaan led for most of the race and finished third. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan lead the pack at the start of the Iowa Corn Indy 300 (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan leads the field during the Iowa Corn Indy 300 at Iowa Speedway (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay celebrates (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The #28 Andretti Autosport team celebrates victory (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay gets a new ride (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay celebrates (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)

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JOHN - Unregistered

October 31, 2010 5:01 PM

Might be for the best Tony. Its not that all good things have to come to an end- being sacked has led to other people going on to do far better things. Things they would never have otherwise have achieved.



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