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Alesi secures unlikely Indy 500 seat

Carlson has made no secret of wanting to follow in the footsteps of other successful Indy Lights teams such as Sam Schmidt Motorsports in moving up to the full IZOD IndyCar Series in due course, and had already employed veteran mechanic and former team owner Greg Beck with expansion in mind.

Now with Lotus in urgent need of a partner for the Indy 500, the opportunity to make its IndyCar début was clearly too good for Fan Force United to pass over.

Alesi is now expected to join other series rookies including fellow F1 graduate Rubens Barrichello at IMS on Thursday to undergo the Rookie Orientation Program that all oval newbies must pass before being eligible to run in qualifying for the Indy 500.

"I feel ready for the Indy 500, but also I am very happy to be doing the rookie test," said Alesi. "This will give me time to gain confidence and the feeling for the car and the track."

The formal Opening Day of track activity at the 2.5-mile speedway is on Saturday, with qualifying for the Indy 500 taking place over the following weekend.




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Ryan Hunter-Reay celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
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RawDawg

May 09, 2012 1:04 AM
Last Edited 1176 days ago

I would have hoped Jean would have come to his senses and called this Indy thing off by now. This has disaster written all over it. It was bad enough he was trying to run with an experienced team but to do it was an Indy Lights team with a Lotus engine? He doesn't have a chance in hell of winning so why he going out there risking life and limb? Indy is the last place to be messing about because you can get injured REALLY bad REALLY quickly. He's old, has zero oval experience, running with an inexperienced team, crap engine in the car, and this isn't like the old days when the track was open for practice the whole month of May. I don't see any good coming of this. I'm with Coop - he'll be lucky and doing himself a favor if he fails to qualify.



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