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2013 Indy 500: Chip Ganassi signs up Ryan Briscoe

Ryan Briscoe is set to return to the IndyCar Series for the first time in 2013, after being handed a race seat for this year's Indy 500 by Ganassi Racing.
Ryan Briscoe will bid to make the starting grid of the 97th Indianapolis 500 race on May 26, after being offered a seat by Chip Ganassi's IZOD IndyCar Series race team.

“To say that I'm excited for the month of May would be a huge understatement," said the 31-year-old Australian, who had spent the last four seasons competing in IndyCar with Ganassi's arch rivals Penske, but who found himself without a full-time ride in 2013 after the team slimmed down from a three - to a two-car operation.

"I can't wait to get started," he added. "I'm looking forward to a successful month.” Briscoe won the pole position at last year's Indy 500 event while with Penske.

But despite his long association with Penske, Briscoe actually made his IndyCar début with Ganassi back in 2005, so when Ganassi realised that the driver was free to compete for him in the Indy 500 this season he wasted little time in making it happen.

"We all know Ryan is a talented driver, having had him in our IndyCar system previously," said Ganassi. "He will get up to speed quickly because he understands the ins and outs of how we operate our race program."

"The opportunity to have him back in a fourth car with us alongside Dario [Franchitti], Scott [Dixon] and Charlie [Kimball] is big."

"There are still a lot of familiar faces on the team from when I drove for Chip in 2005," acknowledged Briscoe on Friday. "I'm thrilled to join the Ganassi team for the Indianapolis 500 this year. Driving for the defending race winner – and especially with teammates that are former winners – is just incredible."

Briscoe exited Ganassi after a huge accident at the end of the 2005 season, with his seat at the time going to another Indy 500 champion, Dan Wheldon. He later had short stints with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and Luczo-Dragon Racing before joining Penske in 2008. In total, Briscoe has 102 starts, seven wins, 12 poles, 27 podiums and over 1,400 laps led with a best championship finish of third place in 2009.

Since being left surplus to requirements in IndyCar at the end of last season, Briscoe has competed in the opening round of the 2013 American Le Mans Series at Sebring Raceway with Level 5 Motorsports. He will make his début in this year's Le Mans 24 Hours in June with the team.




Related Pictures

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Ryan Briscoe celebrates his pole win after qualifying for the 2012 Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, Phillip Abbott LAT Photo USA  (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Ryan Briscoe celebrates his pole win with a big cheque in every sense after qualifying for the 2012 Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, Phillip Abbott LAT Photo USA (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
The front row for the 2012 Indy 500:  Ryan Hunter-Reay, James Hinchcliffe and Ryan Briscoe. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, Michael L. Levitt LAT Photo USA (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Pole winner Ryan Briscoe shows the 9.1 inch margin of victory over runner-up James Hinchcliffe after their 10-mile qualifying runs. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, Michael L. Levitt LAT Photo USA (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
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Will Power celebrates with his team owner Roger Penske after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates with his wife Liz after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Team Chevy sweeps the podium as Tony Kanaan (center), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Saturday, August 30, 2014, during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Teammate Scott Dixon (left), driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes second, and Ed Carpenter, driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes third. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg EllmanLAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, makes a quick pit stop while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Brian Cleary/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by posing with the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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