Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing announced on Wednesday that the team will enter a second car in the Verizon IndyCar Series season-finale GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma (6:30 p.m. ET/NBCSN/INDYCAR Radio Network) for current Indy Lights driver Zachary Claman DeMelo. He will make his series debut next weekend with the team. DeMelo, 19, has had his best Indy Lights season to date with four podium finishes including a win at Road America, and finished fifth in series standings.
Paysafe, a leading global payments provider, will be the primary partner of the No. 16 Honda.
“I’m thrilled to be driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing for my IndyCar Series debut at the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma,” said Zachary Claman DeMelo. “This opportunity marks an incredible moment for my career and for Canadian motorsport fans, as I’m getting that much closer to securing a full-time position with RLLR for next season. I want to extend a big thank you to my primary partner, Paysafe, for making a dream come true today and to Bobby Rahal for the incredible level of support he has provided towards getting me in the #16 Honda this season. It is an honor to drive for RLLR and I look forward to big things ahead.”
“We’re pleased that Zach has chosen Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing to make his series debut,” added Bobby Rahal, co-owner of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing with former CBS Late Show host David Letterman and Mi-Jack co-owner Mike Lanigan. “Zach had a very good year in the Indy Lights Series and we think that he has the ability to perform well in the IndyCar Series. We closely watched his performance at the recent Indy car test at Road America where he was the quickest of the rookies testing and we are confident that he can do a good, solid job for both himself and the team at Sonoma. Our goals for Zach are that he has a good, consistent race and gains experience, which is so important, and hopefully takes that experience to use as a stepping stone for 2018.”