Two former open-wheel rivals, Michael Andretti and Juan Pablo Montoya, may join forces in the IZOD IndyCar Series if sponsorship can be found for the latter.
Montoya (pictured), the 1999 CART champion and 2000 Indianapolis 500 winner, was recently told by Earnhardt Ganassi Racing that he would not be back in their No. 42 Sprint Cup drive in 2014 after a seven-year run in stock cars.
With the Colombian now on the hunt for a new gig, everything’s on the table – including a return to IndyCar. And according to The Associated Press, Andretti has reached out to him about just that.
“I have talked to Juan about IndyCar and told him ‘Hell yeah, let’s find a way to put something together,'” Andretti told the AP’s Jenna Fryer on Monday. “I’ve driven against him and I think he’s one of the best drivers I’ve ever driven against.
“It just comes down to sponsorship. So we’re looking, and if it’s a possibility, we want to do something with him.”
Andretti’s discussions with Montoya will add even more attention to the future plans of four-time IndyCar champs Andretti Autosport.
James Hinchcliffe is in the final year of his contract with the team, and it’s defintely possible that the Canadian fan favorite – who has won three times in 2013 – could head off to another squad.
Fryer reports that AA is also trying to create a deal for Carlos Munoz, who made a name for himself after finishing runner-up in this past May’s Indianapolis 500.
Needless to say, there’s a lot of work ahead for the team to get everything sorted out.
UPDATE No. 2: The INDYCAR Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama was closing in on restarting on Lap 23 or 24 before officials threw the second red flag race stoppage because of lingering puddles on the 2.3-mile Barber Motorsports Park, particularly on the front stretch. We’ll keep you updated as situations warrant.
UPDATE No. 1: The INDYCAR Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama is under a red-flag race stoppage after 19 laps due to rain and puddling on the racing surface at Barber Motorsports Park.
Cleaners and dryers are on the track to try and get some of the water off the racing surface. The low spots on the track, as well as the front stretch, have been particularly troublesome and led to several spinouts and at least two wrecks (Charlie Kimball and outside front pole sitter Will Power).
Power’s day is done after suffering irreparable damage to the left side of his car after hydroplaning on the front straight and running into the inside retaining wall.
ORIGINAL STORY FOLLOWS:
Although rain has been falling for nearly an hour and the Barber Motorsports Park 2.3-mile permanent road course is drenched, the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama is underway on NBCSN.
The start of the race was moved up from 3:38 p.m. ET to take the green flag at 3:08 p.m. ET.
Josef Newgarden is the defending winner of this race and also will start from the pole for today’s race.
While the race is scheduled for 90 laps, there’s a possibility that if the weather worsens or if lightning appears, it could potentially be shortened to just two hours.
As can be expected, all cars are on rain tires to maximize grip.
Catch the race live on NBCSN.