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Pantano to sub for Kimball at Mid-Ohio

Giorgio Pantano will step into the cockpit of the #83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing this weekend at Mid-Ohio, in place of an injured Charlie Kimball.
Charlie Kimball has been declared unfit to race at this weekend's Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 5, following his crash in testing last week that resulted in a fracture of the fifth metacarpal of his right hand.

The injury was initially thought to be minor and the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing team were confident that Kimball would be able to race as normal at the next race of the season. However, further evaluation of the injury in the days since the accident have led to Kimball being forced to sit out the 12th race of the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series.

"I'm very disappointed to miss out on the Mid-Ohio race weekend," said Kimball. "We had such a good race there last year and I was really looking forward to another shot at the podium. However, I trust the medical professionals at IndyCar, and we're making sure I'm back to 100 percent for Sonoma."

Kimball had been hoping to build on a recent surge in form, which included a strong second place at Toronto earlier this month.

"Not having Charlie drive at Mid-Ohio is very disappointing," concurred the managing director of Chip Ganassi Racing, Mike Hull. "Since IndyCar has the best medical resource in motorsports, his recovery will be swift. His performance over the past few weeks has been impressive with increased momentum, so our expectation is that he will be back at full-strength quickly."

The team have called up Giorgio Pantano to substitute for Kimball in the #83 car at Mid-Ohio. The 33-year-old Italian former GP2 driver had two outings with the team in 2005 subbing for an injured Ryan Briscoe, and also had three races with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing last season after their regular priver Justin Wilson injured his back in a practice accident - which also happened at Mid-Ohio, and sidelined the English driver for the rest of the season.

"It's a tremendous opportunity to be rejoining Chip Ganassi Racing and the IZOD IndyCar Series this weekend at Mid-Ohio," said Pantano. "You never want to have something happen to another driver and I wish Charlie a quick recovery. Nonetheless, the opportunity is here and I am looking forward to working with the team again and making the best of it."

"We're lucky to have Giorgio in the seat of the #83 car while I'm healing up," said Kimball. "I'll be there this weekend to help him and the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing team. Even though I won't be in the cockpit, I will do everything I can to drive the whole #83 car program forward for this season and the future."

"We're fortunate to have Giorgio Pantano available as the #83 car driver at Mid-Ohio," agreed Mike Hull. "His impressive global resume fits well with the natural terrain road track of Mid-Ohio. To have a quality driver, who has won the GP2 Championship [in 2008] against the best and blends into the team concept is hard to find on short notice."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Winner Ryan Hunter-Reay, Charlie Kimball and Mike Conway take the checkered flag. July 6-9, 2012. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (c) 2012, Michael L. Levitt (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Charlie Kimball (USA - Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing) rests during the Rookie Orientation Program at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway - Thursday, May 12 [Photo by Ron McQueeney for IndyCar Media]
Charlie Kimball in the #83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing entry. [Picture credit; Chip Ganassi Racing]
Giorgio Pantano racing with Dreyer and Reinbold. [Picture credit: IndyCar Media]
Scott Dixon - Chip Ganassi Indy Car [credit: IndyCar TV Twitter]
Charlie Kimball
Scott Dixon Indy 500
Max Chilton Indy 500 2017
Max Chilton Indy 500 2017
Scott Dixon Indy 500 qualifying
Max Chilton IndyCar 2017
Stefan Wilson, 2016 Indy 500
Scott Dixon (Target Chip Ganassi Racing) on his way to victory at Watkins Glen   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Owens]
Scott Dixon (Target Chip Ganassi Racing) on his way to pole at Watkins Glen   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Owens]
Scott Dixon leads the Indycar field   [pic credit: Indycar media/Bret Kelley]
Justin Wilson tribute at Pocono   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Owens]
Simon Penske - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar media/Bret Kelley]
Simon Pagenaud - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Joe Skibinski]

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Don - Unregistered

July 31, 2012 10:40 PM

Will Giorgio be teamed with Luca Filippi with Scuderia Coloni with their rumored move from GP2 to IndyCar for the 2013 season? Could be interesting.

Schaki - Unregistered

August 17, 2012 8:20 PM

That certainly would be interesting as long as Coloni chooses Honda or Chevrolet as engine-supplier and not Lotus which is just awful on ovals so far.

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