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Driver news: Legge, Rahal, Allmendinger - and Austin

"In the past I might have treated him as a kid but after all these years and all the racing he's done I have confidence that he gets it; he knows what he has to do," Bobby Rahal told reporters at Mid-Ohio this weekend.

Shank wants Allmendinger for IndyCar entry

Michael Shank has confirmed that he wants his friend and business partner AJ Allmendinger to come back to IndyCar in 2013, telling reporters: "I think it's possible he could end up in IndyCar, but I don't know to what degree," adding that "He's said he's interested in doing something here."

Allmendinger is a partner in Shank's MSR Indy venture that tried to field an entry in the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Season with Paul Tracy or Jay Howard at the wheel, only to be thwarted by the lack of an engine deal. Shank still hopes to enter the series in 2013 and is currently eyeing Allmendinger's participation.

“I don't think it's impossible, but you've got a couple factors here to deal with.”

The main factor is Allmendinger's current suspension from NASCAR competition after testing positive for stimulants in a random drugs test last month. Allmendinger denies knowingly taking a prohibited substance but had agreed to undergo NASCAR's 'road to recovery' rehabilitation programme.

“He's real passionate about NASCAR. He doesn't want to just go away and feel like he was defeated," said Shank. "He does not want to be that guy."

While there is no formal reason why Allmendinger can't switch to IndyCar, series officials have said that they would not sign off on the involvement of any driver who was undergoing disciplinary action in another motor racing series, so it's likely that Allmendinger would still have to complete his programme and be reinstated by NASCAR before he could be consider for an IndyCar drive.

However, even after he completed the 'road to recovery', Allmendinger's chances of getting another competitive seat in NASCAR look gloomy. That might encourage the 30-year-old Californian to return to open wheel racing where he made his name in the Champ Car World Series in 2004-2006.

AJ Foyt signs Chase Austin for 2013 Indy 500 bid

Racing legend AJ Foyt has confirmed that his team will be fielding a car for Chase Austin at the 2013 Indianapolis 500 next May.

Assuming that it comes off, then the 22-year-old Kansas native would become only the third African-American driver to compete in the 'greatest spectacle in motorsport.' Austin has already competed in the Firestone Indy Lights Freedom 100 support race at Indianapolis, finishing in tenth place earlier this year.

“My son Larry and I have watched Chase drive and we want to give him a chance,” said Foyt. "He's done a real good job in the Lights series, and I believe he can qualify for the Indy 500 with Honda on board."




Related Pictures

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Graham Rahal #38 Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing during practice for the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012 Dan R. Boyd, LAT Photo USA (Photo credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Bobby Rahal watches on from pit road [Photo Credit: IndyCar Media]
Graham Rahal in pit road at Kentucky Speedway [Photo credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media]
Katherine Legge`s (#6) first lap around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in an Indy Car during practice for the 2012 IndyCar Indy 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, F. Peirce Williams LAT Photo USA (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Katherine Legge (c) 2012, Michael L. Levitt. LAT Photo (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, and his team perform the traditional kissing of the bricks after racing to victory Sunday, May 24, 2015, winning the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Montoya went from near-last to first, winning the Indy 500 for the second time in his career. Chevrolet powered the top four cars in the race. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, drinks the traditional bottle of milk while celebrating his victory Sunday, May 24, 2015, winning the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Montoya went from near-last to first, winning the Indy 500 for the second time in his career. Chevrolet powered the top four cars in the race. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, celebrates his victory Sunday, May 24, 2015, winning the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Montoya went from near-last to first, winning the Indy 500 for the second time in his career. Chevrolet powered the top four cars in the race. (Photo by Scott R. LePage/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, crosses the finish line as he races to victory Sunday, May 24, 2015, winning the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Montoya went from near-last to first, winning the Indy 500 for the second time in his career. Will Power (left), driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, finishes second. Chevrolet powered the top four cars in the race. (Photo by Andy Frame/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Penske team mates Juan Pablo Montoya and Will Power race side-by-wide during the 99th running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday May 24 2015. (Photo by: Jim Haines for IndyCar Media)
Justin Wilson resplendent in the Rolling Stones livery for the #25 Andretti Autosport Honda in pit lane on Carb Day at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Friday May 22 2015. (Photo by: Jim Haines for IndyCar Media)
Justin Wilson resplendent in the Rolling Stones livery for the #25 Andretti Autosport Honda on track on Carb Day at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Friday May 22 2015. (Photo by: Jim Haines for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
James Hinchcliffe during practice prior to Qualifying for the 99th Running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race (Photo by: Leigh Spargur)
Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 Avaya Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, qualifies third fastest Sunday, May 17, 2015, and will start on the outside of the front row for the Verizon IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. Pagenaud will be joined in the front row by by polestar Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet and Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet who qualified second fastest for the May 24 race. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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David Chaste - Unregistered

August 05, 2012 11:13 PM

Graham Rahal can't believe the equipment Chips is giving him that's the problem. He sees the results he is getting and can't belive how far off is is from Dario and Scott. He could have easily took his sponsorship to Schmidt Hamilton, KV or even Dragon racing (now that they have a chevy engine). Those teams have had strong races. And behind the big 3, they're doing well. GRaham has the talent and the funding. Plus that he is American there's no lack of funding for him. Not to mention his dad's team could probably have given his a better car. It's only that Sato is a bit crash prone, so the results aren't showing. But Rahal-Letterman do have a fast car.



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