With Harding Steinbrenner Racing moving to Honda power for the 2019 IndyCar Series season, some Chevrolet engines are available. That’s good news for DragonSpeed Racing. The WEC team will make their series debut at COTA in the open test in February then officially make their debut in the season opener at St. Pete in part of a five race tryout.
The team confirmed the move via a release on Monday morning.
The part time deal will see them compete at St. Pete, Barber, Road America, and Mid-Ohio to go along with the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500. The team will use Chevy engines with a driver expected to be Ben Hanley.
“IndyCar is enjoying a major upswing thanks to the quality of the racing produced by the current regulations. The fans see it, the teams see it, the manufacturers and sponsors see it, and I think NBC saw it when they decided to take on the television coverage,” said the team owner via a statement.
“With so much interest from new entrants, we’re also grateful for IndyCar’s support of our bid to join the series and to Chevy for making room for us in their engine programme.
“For the team, it’s a matter of our growing experience catching up to our ambitions. The last few seasons of endurance racing have given us an intensive platform for developing our preparation, race engineering, pit stop, and strategy skills.
“We also have strong open-wheel credentials up and down the team, and Ben’s pace and exceptional detail feel for set-up and tires should be a great asset.
“None of this is to underplay the difficulty of the challenge ahead, because IndyCar is the toughest series we’ve ever contested, with the world’s biggest race as its centerpiece.
“On the other hand, we didn’t go from club racing a decade ago to a Pirelli World Challenge title in 2015 to prototypes at Le Mans without climbing a few mountains, and I take a lot of confidence from the talent and spirit of the people we’ve put together for the next summit.”