Saturday, February 2, 2013

Andretti Looks At Expansion

After contracting to three cars and winning the Izod IndyCar Series championship, Andretti Autosport is looking to expand their operations.

According to Marshall Pruett of SPEED, the team has hired Craig Hampson as engineer to James Hinchcliffe, a combination that led Hinchcliffe to his Rookie of the Year in 2011 at Newman-Haas Racing and Michael Cannon to engineer a fourth car with a driver still to be announced. Cannon worked for Ed Carpenter Racing in 2012 and previously worked at Forsythe and HVM.

While the driver has not been named, a clue dropped in Pruett's article can be found in the line:
"A formal announcement on Andretti's expansion to four cars is expected next week, and when that driver straps into his chassis..."
The key word is obviously "his," meaning it will be a male driver, negating any chance Ana Beatriz or any other female driver get the ride.

A few male drivers on the outside looking in are Ryan Briscoe, James Jakes, EJ Viso and Sebastián Saavedra. It could be possible Andretti Autosport sign a driver away from their current team to fill in the open seat. Jakes, Viso and Saavedra all have money following them where ever they go, while Ryan Briscoe is a proven race winner and won pole position for last year's Indianapolis 500. Other drivers rumored to being looking to make the move to IndyCar are Gustavo Yacamán and Esteban Guerrieri from Indy Lights and Narain Karthikeyan from Formula One.