Fittipaldi to run Gateway IndyCar race, not Le Mans

Pietro Fittipaldi will enter all four oval races in the 2021 NTT IndyCar Series, and will thus be forced to skip the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Listen to this article

The original plan was for him to run Le Mans with G-Drive as well as run the ovals for Dale Coyne Racing with RWR-Honda.

However, when Le Mans was pushed back from its traditional mid-June date to August 21-22, Fittipaldi was forced to choose between sharing G-Drive’s LMP2 Aurus (ORECA) Gibson with Rui Andrade and John Falb, and competing at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway.

The grandson of IndyCar legend Emerson Fittipaldi has elected for the latter, a venue at which he shone in his injury-interrupted 2018 season with Coyne. With the grid set by points due to rain ending qualifying, and Fittipaldi having missed several races due to his WEC shunt at Spa, he was forced to start at the back of the field at the 1.25-mile oval, yet came through to finish 11th.

This weekend in the Texas Motor Speedway double-header, Fittipaldi will make his first IndyCar starts in more than two years when he takes over the #51 Coyne-RWR car driven in the opening two rounds by Romain Grosjean. Next month he will be entered for the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500.

Fittipaldi’s presence at Gateway increases the possibility of Coyne running three cars there – for full-timer Ed Jones in the DCR with Vasser Sullivan car, and then two cars in partnership with Rick Ware Racing for Fittipaldi and Grosjean.

While ex-Formula 1 driver Grosjean has said no to superspeedways this year, he’s admitted on record and in private that he’s intrigued by oval racing, and Coyne confirmed to Motorsport.com that the 35-year-old Frenchman last weekend again discussed the possibility of racing at Gateway.

Coyne has already stated that the team can and will run three cars at Gateway should Grosjean elect to race there.

DCR has three entries in the Indy 500, for Jones, Fittipaldi and Cody Ware, who completed his Rookie Orientation Program earlier this month. However, Ware is still seeking more sponsorship to seal the ride.

shares
comments

Related video

Mario Andretti: America would "go crazy" over Herta in F1
Previous article

Mario Andretti: America would "go crazy" over Herta in F1

Next article

Ruoff becomes associate sponsor for Andretti Autosport

Ruoff becomes associate sponsor for Andretti Autosport
Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021 Prime

Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021

In an enthralling 2021 IndyCar campaign, the series bounced back from its COVID-19 truncated year prior and series sophomore Alex Palou defeated both the established order and his fellow young guns to clinch a maiden title. It capped a remarkable season with plenty of standout performers

IndyCar
Nov 22, 2021
How Marcus Ericsson finally unlocked his potential in IndyCar Prime

How Marcus Ericsson finally unlocked his potential in IndyCar

Marcus Ericsson enjoyed a breakout year in the IndyCar Series in 2021, winning twice and finishing sixth in points with Chip Ganassi Racing. How did he finally unlock the potential that was masked by five years of toil in Formula 1 with Caterham and Sauber/Alfa Romeo?

IndyCar
Nov 16, 2021
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win Prime

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win

Saturday, Oct. 16th, marks the 10th anniversary Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500.

IndyCar
Oct 16, 2021
Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Prime

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Jack Harvey’s move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate, but their combined strength could prove golden, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 15, 2021
Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Prime

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong résumé and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear. By David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star Prime

2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star

Alex Palou has captured Chip Ganassi Racing's 14th IndyCar drivers' championship, and in truly stellar manner. David Malsher-Lopez explains what made the Palou-Ganassi combo so potent so soon.

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021
Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar Prime

Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar

One of motorsport’s worst-kept secrets now out in the open, and Romain Grosjean has been confirmed as an Andretti Autosport IndyCar driver in 2022. It marks a remarkable turnaround after the abrupt end to his Formula 1 career, and is a firm indication of his commitment to challenge for the IndyCar Series title  

IndyCar
Sep 24, 2021
IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch Prime

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch

The 2021 IndyCar silly season is one of the silliest of all, but it’s satisfying to see so many talented drivers in play – including Callum Ilott. David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Sep 11, 2021