The Verizon IndyCar Series silly season is playing out exactly as we predicted. The recent domino has fallen, this time with Zach Veach. He will be in the series on a full-time basis not just for 2018, but for the future as well, as the Ohio native has signed a multiyear deal with Andretti Autosport. Sources have confirmed this move and said it will be formally announced on Friday at Sonoma Raceway.
To be fair, Andretti Autosport won’t comment on it yet, but several sources in the know confirmed the deal is signed.
Veach, 22, has made two INDYCAR starts during this career so far, the first in a fill-in role at Barber back in April where he finished 19th. with Ed Carpenter Racing. JR Hildebrand missed the race due to a fractured wrist suffered on the last lap at Long Beach, and Veach was there to fill in. Then, he finished 26th in May’s Indianapolis 500 where he started 32nd in a third AJ Foyt Racing car.
Now, Veach gets his chance with Andretti on a full-time level, virtually replacing Takuma Sato.
Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti will be back with the team while Veach will hop in the seat being left by Sato who’s leaving the team after one season to join Rahal/Letterman/Lanigan Racing’s second seat.
Veach, is back where it all started as he spent five of his six Mazda Road to Indy seasons with Andretti.
He ran two years in USF2000 competition with them in 2010 and again in 2011, winning one race and having seven podiums and 16 top five finishes in 20 career starts. In 2012, he moved up to Star Mazda competition where he had two podiums and 10 top 10 results in 17 tries.
From there, he raced in Indy Lights for Andretti from 2013 through 2014, where he had three wins, 10 podiums, 17 top fives and 26 top 10’s in 26 starts. But, he wasn’t retained with them for the 2015 season, where he was left without a ride. He’d then join Belardi Racing for 2016 where he had three victories, eight podiums, 11 top five finishes and 17 top 10’s.
Overall, he had seven wins (6 with Andretti), 17 podiums (9 with Andretti), 46 top fives (35 with Andretti) and 73 top 10’s (56 with Andretti) in 83 career MRTI starts (65 with Andretti).