Monday, August 13, 2007

Silly Season update, Aug. 13

The Silly Season update for Aug. 13

2007 lineup
Andretti Green Racing (4)
7-Danica Patrick (Motorola, 3rd-year FT driver, 1st year with AGR). Confirmed for 2008.
11-Tony Kanaan (7-11, 5th year FT driver, all with AGR, 2004 champ). Under contract through 2008.
26-Marco Andretti (NYSE Group, 2nd year FT driver, all with AGR). Likely for 2008, although Grandpa Mario has been hinting at wanting to get Marco in the F1 ladder series.
27-Dario Franchitti (Canadian Club, 5th year FT driver, all with AGR). Free Agent at the end of the year. Had considered retirement, but "invigorated" after Indy 500 win. Now that he's shown off his helicopter pilot skills in back-to-back races, who knows?

Team Penske (2)
3-Helio Castroneves (Team Penske, 6th-year FT driver, all with Penske, 2-time I500 champ). Likely for 2008, although he said last week that he would be "interested" in NASCAR (but every race driver is "interested" in other series). Helio has said he's staying with Penske, though

6-Sam Hornish Jr. (Team Penske, 8th-year FT driver, 4th with Penske, 3x ICS champ)
**Has been heavily rumored to be pondering NASCAR, and is running ARCA/Busch races this year**
**Aug. 12: Hornish answers questions at Kentucky ... smiling, laughing, gives 5 reasons he wouldn't go to NASCAR (he gives the reasons why he wouldn't, didn't say he won't, though) ...
They are ... I couldn't have Helio for a teammate, we've got great fans in the IRL, the schedule is a little bit more over there, the Indy 500, it's not IndyCars. See it on YouTube.
**Aug. 9: Hornish says he's about "50-50" in Cincinnati Enquirer**
**If Sam leaves, Ryan Briscoe has been mentioned as a possible replacement in several places, including Curt Cavin's blog**

Target Chip Ganassi Racing (2)
9-Scott Dixon (Target, 5th-year FT driver, all with TCGR, 2003 champ). Likely for 2008.
10-Dan Wheldon (Target, 5th-year FT driver, 2nd with TCGR, 2005 champ). Likely for 2008.
**Aug. 13: According to, Indy Pro Series points leader Alex Lloyd will test with TCGR at Sebring later this week. Does this portend a future ride in a red car?** (thanks to Jeff Ianucci at MyNameIsIRL for the link & info).

Rahal Letterman Racing (2)
8-Scott Sharp (Patron, 12th-year FT driver, 1st with RLR, 1996 champ). Will be at RLR as long as Patron has the $
17-Ryan Hunter-Reay (Ethanol, rookie, former CC driver). Replaced Jeff Simmons at RLR before Mid-Ohio race. Will be wih RLR at least through the end of the year. Will likely be the ICS Rookie of the Year.

Panther Racing (2)
4-Vitor Meira (Delphi, 6th-year FT driver, 2nd with Panther). Hard-luck driver hasn't had much luck this year.
55-Kosuke Matsuura (Panasonic, 4th-year FT driver, 1st with Panther). May be on his way out, with Hideki Mutoh waiting in the wings.
**60-Hideki Mutoh is slated to run the season-ender at Chicago, as announced in a presser at Mid-Ohio. May jump into Super Aguri seat currently held by Matsuura in 2008**

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing (2)
5-Sarah Fisher (AAMCO, 6th FT season, 2nd with D&R). Has sponsorships from AAMCO and AAA.
**Aug. 11: Fisher says in AP article that D&R is going down to one car next year, and it would be difficult for her to sell herself given her performances this year. But with her gaining sponsorship from AAMCO and AAA, I would anticipate she wouldn't have much difficulty finding a ride. Later in the weekend, she said she was misquoted, but it was also stated that D&R *is* considering dropping one of its two entries for 2008.**
15-Buddy Rice (RollCoater, 6th-year FT driver, 1st with D&R). Has had a lot of success this season, given the fact that D&R generally has struggled.

Vision Racing (3)
2-Tomas Scheckter (Joost, 6th-year FT driver, 2nd with Vision). Has been increasingly stronger. If someone is going to bring Vision its first win, this guy will likely be it.
20-Ed Carpenter (Hitachi Power Tools, 4th-year FT driver, 3rd with Vision). I'd expect he'll have a ride at Vision as long as he wants one.
22-A.J. Foyt IV (Indy Vision, 4th-year FT driver, 1st with Vision). Third at Kentucky won't hurt his chances.

A.J. Foyt Racing (1)
14-Darren Manning (ABC Supply, 3rd-year FT driver). Although he backed it into the wall the last race, he's turned up some decent results for A.J. this year.

**Part-Time Entries**
SAMAX Racing (1)
23-Milka Duno (Citgo - rookie). Duno is on probation. She has run six races of an initially-planned 10-race part-time schedule. She skipped Kentucky to film Speed Racer.

Roth Racing (1)
Marty Roth: Has landed sponsorship from Dussault Apparel for the season finale at Chicagoland. Also slated to run Belle Isle, according to the Aug. 1 Detroit Free Press. Has spoken about offering a second car at Chicagoland for the IPS points leader.
**Aug. 13: According to, it won't be Alex Lloyd in a Roth car at Chicago. Maybe someone else? Wade Cunningham, Bobby Wilson and AGR driver Jaime Camara are the next three in points.

Racing Professionals (1)
Jon Herb: Has stated he's trying to squirrel together a sponsorship package for Chicagoland.

Beck Racing (1)
Alex Barron: Although Beck ran some early-season events, the Beck machine hasn't been seen since Indy.

With Mutoh's entry, and if Roth brings 2 cars (one for himself and one for an IPS driver), Herb brings one and if SAMAX brings back Duno (or Enge), the car count could hit 23 for the Chicagoland race. Curt Cavin, in his Aug. 8 Indy Star blog, said he expects 22 cars for Chicagoland.

From Curt Cavin's blog (8/8/2007), Adrian Fernandez's team still has its IndyCar equipment and Tom Anderson is apparently interested in a return to the IRL, but things "haven't been worked out." Cavin says on Aug. 13 that he knows of two individuals to keep an eye on for new 2008 teams, but hasn't seen any sign of $$ backing them.

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