Silly Season, 2017-18

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Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by Alpineopossum on Sun Aug 27, 2017 12:04 am

IndyCar
- James Hinchcliffe may be the key to the silly season. Schmitt is interested in having him back and it sounds like they have the sponsorship. But Chip Ganassi Racing may be interested in his services.
- Roger Penske is returning to sportscars with a new Acura prototype. Juan Pablo Montoya is one of the drivers, and Helio Castroneves may be anmother.
- Takuma Sato may leave Andretti to join Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. Rahal has occasionally run a multi-car operation, and last ran the #16 entry for James Jakes in 2013, and has run Spencer Pigot, Oriol Servia, and Luca Filippi in the car on a part time basis
- Dale Coyne wants to keep Sebastien Bourdais, and he is likely to return
- Andretti Autosport looks likely to switch to Chevrolet, but this is not a done deal.
- Supposedly if they do switch to Chevrolet, Takuma Sato and Alexander Rossi are almost certainly going to leave the team
- With open seats at Andretti a possibility, Andretti has tested three Indy Lights drivers - Nico Jamin, Dalton Kellett, and Matheus Leist in their top level cars at Road America earlier this summer
- Bryan Herta is connected with Honda, and may break his team away from his one time employer Andretti Autosport and partner with Schmitt Peterson Motorsports, possibly with Alexander Rossi, who also has Honda ties.
- But Chip Ganassi Racing may try to sign Rossi away from Herta, and may replace either Kanaan or Chilton with the Californian F1 driver.
- Meanwhile, Zachary Clamen DeMehlo has tested with Sam Schmitt's team.
- Tony Kanaan is a free agent, and may be switching teams, possibly back to Andretti. Ganassi may slim down to three cars, and Charlie Kimball may want to leave.
- Max Chilton may be out at Ganassi as well, and with Carlin reportedly considering a move up to IndyCar.
- With seats at Ganassi and Andretti open, both may try to sign new drivers - some that may be under consideration, other than those mentioned above, include Ed Jones, Spencer Pigot, and Esteben Gutierriez, who may end up staying in America and persuing an IndyCar ride
- Brendon Hartley, who's won Le Mans and has plenty of race wins in the World Endurance Championship, Grand Am, and GP2, is out of a ride now that Porsche is leaving P1, and rumors place him in Indycar next year.
- Harding Racing is planning a move to full time competition, likely with Gabby Chaves, who ran a partial season with them
- Juncos Racing, which took over what used to be KV Racing Techology last year, might go full time. Carlin might as well.
- Jack Harvey will do two races for Schmitt at the end of the season and may do more next year.

Confirmed Cars
Penske - 2 - Josef Newgarden
Penske - 12 - Will Power
Penske - 22 - Simon Pagenaud
Schmitt - 5 - James Hinchcliffe or ???
Schmitt - 7 - Brendon Hartley? Robert Wickens? Sebastian Saavedra? Jack Harvey? Earl Bamber?
Ganassi - 9 - Scott Dixon
Ganassi - 10 - ???Esteben Gutierriez? Felix Rosenqvist?
Foyt - 14 - Tony Kanaan?
Rahal - 15 - Graham Rahal
Rahal - 16 - Takuma Sato
Coyne - 18 - Sébastien Bourdais
Coyne - 19 - Ed Jones? Esteben Gutierriez?
Carpenter - 20 - Ed Carpenter (ovals) and ?Spencer Pigot? (Road Courses?)
Carpenter - 21 - JR Hildebrand? Zach Veach? Spencer Pigot?
Andretti - 26 - ?Fernando Alonso? Nico Jamin? Matheus Leist? Dalton Kellett? Jack Harvey?
Andretti - 27 - Marco Andretti
Andretti - 28 - Ryan Hunter Reay
Andretti Herta - 98 - Alex Rossi
Harding - 88 - Gabby Chaves

Possible Entries / One Off Entries
Penske - 3 - Helio Castroneves (Indy only?)
Penske - ? - Juan Pablo Montoya (Indy only)
Foyt - 4 - Conor Daly?
Ganassi - 8 - Esteben Gutierriez?  Felix Rosenqvist?
Ganassi - 83 - Charlie Kimball? Felix Rosenqvist? Esteben Gutierriez?
Juncos - 11 - Zach Veach? Kyle Kaiser? (500 only, could be full time)
Juncos - 17 - Sebastian Saavedra? Kyle Kaiser? (500 only, could be full time)
Coyne - 63 - Pippa Mann (500)
Andretti - 29 - Stefan Wilson (Indy 500 only)
Lazier - 44 - Buddy Lazier (Indy 500 only - confirmed)
Foyt - 40 - Alex Tagliani? Conor Daly? Carlos Munoz? Zach Veach? (500 only)
Andretti/Michael Shank - 50 - Katherine Legge? Jack Harvey?

Monster Energy Series
- Kasey Kahne has been dropped by Hendrick and will be replaced by William Byron
- Dale Earnhardt Jr is retiring, and will be replaced by Alex Bowman
- Danica, without a major sponsor and having not performed might be dropped by SHR, who could simply close the #10 team or replace her with another driver, possibly Kahne or Matt Kenseth. Speaking of which...
- ...Kenseth is being dropped by Gibbs and replaced by Erik Jones, who returns to Gibbs, the team he ran in xfinity with, after driving for Furniture Row this year.
- Penske is expanding to three cars, with Ryan Blaney driving the third car.
- Paul Menard takes himself and his sponsorship to the Wood Brothers.
- The 27 car now lacks a driver and a sponsor, and may shut down, but...
- ...Richard Petty Motorsports may team up or even merge with RCR, meaning that RCR may have three cars, the 3 for Austin Dillon, the 31 of Ryan Newman, and the 43, driver TBA.
- Petty was apparently impressed with Darrell Wallace Jr and would consider bringing him back, perhaps in a second car if funding can be found, or even in the 43, as Almirola is a free agent after this year.
- FasLane actually signed someone to a multi year contract... Matt DiBenedetto of all people
- Front Row Motorsports is looking at Michael McDowell. It has a third charter and might use it for a third car if funding can be found.
- Kurt Busch was released from his contract but could apparently still return. Or was it? There's some confusion
- Chip Ganassi Racing lost Target as a sponsor, but apparently has a new one in the works that will allow Kyle Larson to come back
- Furniture Row will return with at least one car, driven by Martin Truex, but is trying to keep the second car, but not with Erik Jones, who moves to Gibbs. Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Darrell Wallace, and Chris Bell are all possibilities.
- Kasey Kahne could move to Levine Family Racing.

IMSA
- Team Penske is starting a major IMSA Sportscar Operation with the new Acura ARX-05 prototype, co-developed by Oreca and Honda Performance Development. Juan Pablo Montoya has been confirmed as a driver, as has Dane Cameron. Helio Castroneves is reportedly going to quit full time IndyCar racing to take one of the other seats. The fourth full time seat is unknown, but Acura has an extensive GT program, which includes two full time drivers - Katherine Legge and Ozz Negri - who have prototype experience. One crazy rumor is that Penske might lure Ricky Taylor from his family's team.
- Surprisingly fast JDC Miller Motorsports has had a very successful 2017 and is looking to expand to two cars
- Performance Tech Motorsports, which is running (and winning) in LMPC this year, will have to move classes if they want to stay in the top series, as the PC class won't be a part of the series in 2018 (it is planned to be folded into Prototype Lites with the new P3 formula). They may end up in Prototype
- Ed Carpenter Racing is seeking to start an IMSA program. Racer wrote that it would either be in GTLM or Prototype if it happened
- BMW is opening up its GT contract, and Rahal Letterman may have competition for the bid - from Andretti Autosport! Andretti has stated its interest in a GT program, and it may happen even if it doesn't happen with BMW
- Risi Competizione faced budget issues this year, but it is trying to be back full time next season.
- Similarly, Scuderia Corsa hasn't made plans clear for next year, but Christina Nielsen and Alessandro Balzan currently lead the championship, and seem to be content to continue driving for the prancing horse.
- Michael Shank Racing won't be a full factory team next year but could still return in some form. Andy Lally and Katherine Legge have multiple wins this year.

Team Chart
Prototype
Confirmed
Extreme Speed - Nissan - 2 - Sharp/???
Extreme Speed - Nissan - 22 - Derani/van Overbeek
Action Express - Cadillac - 5 - Fittipaldi/Barbosa
Action Express - Cadillac - 31 - ???
Penske - Acura - 6 - Montoya/Cameron
Penske - Acura - 7? - Castroneves? Ricky Taylor? Button?
Wayne Taylor - Cadillac - 10 - Jordan Taylor, Ricky Taylor? Alex Lynn? Jeff Gordon? (rolex 24)
United Autosport - Oreca - 22 - Owen/Norris
PR1 Mathiasen - Ligier - 52 - Gutierriez?/Pla?
Mazda Team Joest - 55 - ???
Mazda Team Joest - 70 - ???
JDC Miller - 85 - Simpson/Goikhberg
JDC Miller - ?? - ???


Last edited by Alpineopossum on Sun Sep 17, 2017 4:47 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by mtrimmer365 on Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:40 am

Sato is likely to go to Rahal at this point, and this may confirm Andretti's move to Chevrolet. I really wish I knew more about this though since it really impacts me, and if we sign Kanaan I honestly don't know what I would do...

(Is this just going to be a mega-thread for all silly seasons then?)
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by Alta on Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:42 am

Indycar 2018 predictions: (IMO)

Foyt:

Munoz
Daly

Andretti:
Hunter-Reay
Rossi
Andretti
Alonso (If not Harvey)

Ganassi:

Dixon
Felix Rosenqvist
Gutierrez

Coyne:

Bourdias
Jones

Carpenter:

Veach/Carpenter
Hildebrand

Harding:

Chaves
Kannan

Juncos:

Pigot
Kyle Kaiser

Rahal:

Rahal
Sato

Schmidt:

Hinchcliffe
Santi Urrutia

Penske:

Newgarden
Pagenaud
Power

Carlin:

Chilton
Kimball



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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by bsoyuz on Tue Aug 29, 2017 4:05 pm

Regardless of what happens, brazilian networks are already giving away a return by Tony Kanaan, team is unknown, but at this point, despite the animosity, could be safe to assume a possible return to Ganassi.
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by mtrimmer365 on Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:15 pm

Indycar So Far....

Foyt - 4 Conor Daly
14 Carlos Munoz

This team is bound to stay the same. I hope they can improve results next year, because they have been the most mediocre team this year (and that has nothing to do with driver talent).

Andretti - 26 Tony Kanaan (plz be Alonso)
27 Marco Andretti
28 Ryan Hunter Reay
98 Alexander Rossi

Andretti is staying with Honda, so Rossi is coming back. Kanaan could return to Andretti, but that seems unlikely with me for some reason. However, if Kanaan falls through and Alonso just doesn't happen, then Harvey, Kellett, and a few other drivers are possibilities.

Ganassi - 8 Santiago Urrutia
9 Scott Dixon
10 Felix Rosenqvist (glad to see someone else agree with this)
83 Charlie Kimball (Damn this year has been terrible for him)

I find Ganassi's situation very intriguing. Chilton seems a lock to be gone with the possibility of Carlin, and Kanaan and Kimball could very well go as well. This team will either welcome alot of new drivers, or may even scale back to three cars. Pay attention to this team during the offseason.

Carpenter - 20 Ed Carpenter/Zach Veach
21 Spencer Pigot

Hildebrand had some ups and downs, and he should be back in the 21 next year, but for now I think Hildebrand is too inconsistent. This team may also expand to three cars, but I don't see that happening.

Coyne - 18 Sebastien Bourdais
19 Ed Jones

No changes needed here, good team overall.

Rahal - 15 Graham Rahal
16 Takuma Sato

This should be interesting. Sato jumps to a brand new team again, as he makes a return to a much improved Rahal team.

Schmidt - 5 James Hinchcliffe
7 Zachary Claman DeMelo

This team may have an entirely new lineup next season. Hinch is definitely a contender in a possible revamped Ganassi team, and the 7 car's driver is a mystery. I see Hinch staying, for now.

Penske - 1 Josef Newgarden
12 Will Power
22 Simon Pagenaud

Castroneves will head to sports cars after this season ends, and Penske won't go out of their way to find a fourth car yet. This team should be the top dog, just as they are every year.

Juncos - 11 Kyle Kaiser
17 JR Hildebrand

Kaiser is bound to travel up with his team to Indycar. Hildebrand I just pulled out of my ass.

Harding - 88 Gabby Chaves

Will be interesting to see how this team performs

Carlin - 22 Max Chilton

Chilton has had ties with Carlin, and 22 is just a random number

That's a 25 car total, not too shabby at all.

For schedule

1. St Petersburg
2. Phoenix
3. Long Beach
4. Portland
5. Barber
6. Indianapolis RC
7. Indianapolis 500
8A. Detroit 1
8B. Detroit 2
9. Fort Worth
10. Elkhart Lake
11. Iowa
12. Toronto
13. Mid Ohio
14. Pocono
15. Gateway
16. Watkins Glen
17. Sonoma
18. Mexico City or Puebla (1.25 oval called Autodromo Miguel E. Abed, needs prepared properly)

A Calgary race after Toronto is a definite possibility as well

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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by bsoyuz on Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:41 pm

mtrimmer365 wrote:
18. Mexico City or Puebla (1.25 oval called Autodromo Miguel E. Abed, needs prepared properly)

Oh please gimme Puebla, I honestly consider this the best mexican oval ever, it's New Hampshire/Milwaukee on steroids.
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by Cardinals5 on Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:00 pm

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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by Alpineopossum on Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:41 am

Jenson Button has said he will race full time somewhere in 2018.

There are several schools of thought on this. One is that he will return to F1. Alonso could be leaving McLaren, and Button could put in one more season for his longtime team. But I'm not sure that's what either party wants, McLaren wants a younger driver most likely and Button doesn't want to end his F1 career with a diminished program possibly orphaned by Honda. Though Button did win his championship with a diminished program orphaned by Honda...

The other school of thought is that Button will run a full year outside of F1. Super GT may be an option, and he ran the Suzuka 1000km (I believe co-driving an NSX with Kosuke Matsuura (remember him?). The other possibility is that he will drive in IMSA next year. Either as a one off Rolex 24 entry with United Autosports - owned by McLaren's Zak Brown but independent of Woking - or a full time effort with Team Penske's new Acura/Honda backed prototype team that already has signed Dane Cameron and the man who replaced Button at Williams so many years ago Juan Pablo Montoya.

Jenson Button also recently bought a home in Los Angeles, and one British tabloid reported that he and his girlfriend are living there more or less full time. So... why would you move to Los Angeles if you were planning a comeback in either Japan or F1? IMSA is starting to look like a real possibility.

And, if he's driving for Penske it wouldn't be inconceivable that he could run the Indianapolis 500, though there's been essentially no rumors about that in the deal.

Sportscar365 was the first to report the Button to IMSA with Penske thing, and they did predict Penske's sportscar program a couple of years before it happened...
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by zfitzwater599 on Thu Aug 31, 2017 10:57 am

Andretti Autosport will stay with Honda
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by RetrogradeRenegade on Thu Aug 31, 2017 3:08 pm

Alpineopossum wrote:Jenson Button has said he will race full time somewhere in 2018.

There are several schools of thought on this. One is that he will return to F1.

Jenson Button is not going back to F1 under any circumstances. He's quite obviously done with the sport.
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by The_Wall_91 on Sat Sep 02, 2017 11:56 pm

RetrogradeRenegade wrote:
Alpineopossum wrote:Jenson Button has said he will race full time somewhere in 2018.

There are several schools of thought on this. One is that he will return to F1.

Jenson Button is not going back to F1 under any circumstances. He's quite obviously done with the sport.

I have to agree with Retro. To me, if Jenson gets back into racing, I highly doubt that he will be in a F1 car.

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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by mtrimmer365 on Sat Sep 09, 2017 2:53 pm

Tony Kanaan is likely to go to Foyt of all places, and Rahal may have a third car in 2018, though the exact info is unknown at this point.
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by Alpineopossum on Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:24 pm

Sam Schmitt has a shortlist in the form of a spreadsheet for 28 drivers that are contenders for the #7 car.

Two of the names confrimed to be on the shortlist are Brendon Hartley and Robert Wickens. Hartley won Le Mans this year with Porsche but is out of a job with Porsche's withdrawl from Le Mans. The New Zealander is a race winner in F3, Grand Am, and most notably the WEC where he was the champion in 2015. Wickens, an ex-DTM pilot who nearly raced at Road America, is also a major contender.

So is Jack Harvey and Sebastian Saavedra (who always seems to get rides thanks to his AFS money), as well as Earl Bamber...and 23 other drivers.

Schmitt Peterson appears to be close to resigning James Hinchcliffe to the #5, seemingly putting a damper on Hinchcliffe to Ganassi rumors.
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by Alta on Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:00 am

Tristian Gommendy will run the 2018 Indy 500 after a near 11 year absence from American Open Wheel racing in a 3rd Schmidt that's funded by the former co-owner of Larousse F1. The sketchy thing about this is Didier Calmels the co-owner in question has a prior murder conviction in which he was sentenced to six years for (not longer due to French courts finding the case a "crime of passion)
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by flyingturns89 on Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:04 pm

Two things that haven't been mentioned yet.

First off, an official announcement is expected Friday with Andretti Autosport confirming their 2018 driver lineup, which will feature the addition of Zach Veach. Veach would replace Takuma Sato, who is leaving Andretti for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.

Secondly, Ed Carpenter Racing announced today that Spencer Pigot will replace JR Hildebrand in the #21 car in 2018. No word on who will replace Pigot in the #20 car or what Hildebrand will be doing next season.

Sources:
Veach: https://www.motorsport.com/indycar/news/zach-veach-signs-with-andretti-autosport-through-2020-951896/
Pigot: http://www.edcarpenterracing.com/ed-carpenter-racing-elevates-spencer-pigot-full-time-2018-indycar-season/
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Re: Silly Season, 2017-18

Post by mtrimmer365 on Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:55 pm

Alta wrote:Tristian Gommendy will run the 2018 Indy 500 after a near 11 year absence from American Open Wheel racing in a 3rd Schmidt that's funded by the former co-owner of Larousse F1. The sketchy thing about this is Didier Calmels the co-owner in question has a prior murder conviction in which he was sentenced to six years for (not longer due to French courts finding the case a "crime of passion)

LOL WHAT

Also, as someone who has family associated with Andretti.....I'm not a Veach fan, I hope he can impress.
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