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Teams head west for latest pre-season test

"It makes sense for all involved," explained Hunter-Reay. "I get a different perspective on things, and Ed Carpenter Racing being a one-car team gets a different perspective as well. So it's a good opportunity."

"One of the great things about being a part of Team Chevy is that we really do work together, and this is a part of that," added Carpenter. "Marco ran my car at Fontana when we did the Chevy test out there [in 2012], and this is kind of part two."

JR Hildebrand came in just under the 1:20s mark for Panther Racing, while Simona de Silvestro was disappointed to finish at the bottom of the time sheets in the second KV Racing car a few hundredths off Hildebrand.

The big test of the pre-season period will come at the 2.38-mile, 17-turn Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama on March 12-13, with the season-opener to the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series set fr the streets of St Petersburg on March 24.

“It definitely feels like the season is almost upon us,” said Rahal Letterman Lanigan driver Graham Rahal at the prospect of the Barber open test, which will allow fan attendance.

ABC Supply extends AJ Foyt Racing sponsorship

ABC Supply will remain their sponsorship of AJ Foyt Racing through to the 2015 season, the two companies announced this week. The extension takes the partnership between them to 11 years, making it the second-longest running sponsorship in the IZOD IndyCar Series

“We have had such great success with our sponsorship program so far it wasn't a tough decision to keep it going,” said ABC Supply's David Luck. "We are really looking forward to seeing Takuma Sato behind the wheel of the ABC Supply car this year.

"Takuma joined us on our recent customer cruise and he was great with our guests," Luck added. "It's going to be an exciting and fun year!

Disney sells ESPN UK to BT Vision

ESPN's UK and Ireland television channels have been sold to BT Vision, it was announced this week. BT will continue to operate at least one ESPN-branded channel, while also acquiring ESPN's existing UK and Ireland rights to soccer matches from the FA Cup, Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League, UEFA Europa League and the German Bundesliga, as well as rights to US sports including NCAA College Basketball and NCAA College Football for broadcast on the new BT Sports channels. I's not confirmed which platforms will carry the channels, or what the subscription rates will be.

Moreover, the situation regarding IndyCar coverage in particular remains unclear. Earlier this month, ESPN UK beat Sky Sports to acquire the live broadcast rights of the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series, but the championship is not mentioned in BT Sports press releases regarding this week's acquisition of the channels. Enquiries on the BT Vision website indicated that the situation regarding IndyCar was still in flux and plans uncertain, with representatives only saying that IndyCar will continue to be aired until the deal to acquire ESPN UK is finalised in July.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Will Power in the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet during pre-season testing at Sebring. March 2012. [Photo Credit: Michael Levitt - LAT for IndyCar Media]
Justin Wilson in the #18 Sonny`s Barbecue Dale Coyne Racing Honda during pre-season testing at Sebring. March 2012. [Photo Credit: Michael Levitt - LAT for IndyCar Media]
Simon Pagenaud in the #77 Schmidt-Hamilton Motorsports Honda during pre-season testing at Sebring. March 2012. [Photo Credit: Michael Levitt - LAT for IndyCar Media]
Conor Daly tests at Sebring International Raceway (Photo Credit: John Hendrick for IndyCar Media)
Tristan Vautier testing at Sebring International Raceway (Photo Credit: John Hendrick for IndyCar Media)
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Hawk Performance Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to an 11th-place finish Sunday, August 2, 2015, during the Verizon IndyCar Series race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. Montoya retains the overall driver`s championship points lead with two races left in the season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to an fourth-place finish Sunday, August 2, 2015, during the Verizon IndyCar Series race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 PPG Finishes Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to a third-place finish Sunday, August 2, 2015, during the Verizon IndyCar Series race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #22 PPG Finishes Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his third-place finish Sunday, August 2, 2015, during the Verizon IndyCar Series race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Graham Rahal leads a group through the Turn 2 Keyhole turn during the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Graham Rahal and his father, Bobby, celebrate in Victory Circle following their win in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Podium celebrations for Graham Rahal and Justin Wilson after the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Podium celebrations for Graham Rahal, Justin Wilson and Simon Pagenaud after the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Graham Rahal sprays the champagne in Victory Lane following his victory in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Graham Rahal wins the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Graham Rahal begins the celebration as he wins the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay waits in his pit stand prior to practice for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay rolls down pit lane for practice for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)

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