Huertas excited about “different challenge” with Panther test (VIDEO)

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Some IndyCar observers likely cocked an eyebrow when Panther Racing revealed that Formula Renault 3.5 (World Series by Renault) driver Carlos Huertas was going to test for them in today’s Chevrolet IndyCar manufacturer test at Sebring International Raceway.

Let’s face it – the announcement seemed a bit out of left field. But, likely recognizing the fact that not many IndyCar diehards would know about him, the team has put out a brief video with Huertas talking about his chance to take the reins of the No. 4 Chevy (pictured) in the test.

“I’m excited, because it’s a different challenge,” the 22-year-old Colombian says in the clip. “Obviously, it’s a different series, very different from what I’m used to. The car should be very similar in some respects to what I’m used to, and I’m just excited working with another team, another series, being in another country…It’s a new challenge.”

Huertas also touched on other topics, including who he considers as his driving hero and his thoughts on potentially racing against one of his country’s most famous drivers, Juan Pablo Montoya, now back in IndyCar with Team Penske.

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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To say that Belardi Auto Racing’s Aaron Telitz has endured a difficult start to the 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season would be an understatement. The Wisconsin native only completed four corners through the first three races – Races 1 and 2 at St. Petersburg, and Race 1 at Barber Motorsports Park – with St. Pete being especially problematic.

He took the pole for Race 1, but a crash during qualifying for Race 2 prevented him from actually starting. What’s more, the damage was so severe that the Belardi team needed a brand new chassis, with Telitz’s Dallara IL-15 damaged beyond repair.

They also had to borrow a car from Carlin for Race 2, but Telitz’s race ended after he got tangled up with Victor Franzoni in Turn 2 on Lap 1.

With the damage bill well into the six figures as a result, Telitz has taken to some unique, or rather, creative ways to raise money in the aftermath to help cover the costs. “Creative,” in this case, meaning Telitz is using his art skills.

An artist in his spare time, Telitz has begun selling his own original paintings to help raise money.

 “I’ve been to a lot of art shows and I see stuff and I go, ‘Holy cow, someone’s going to pay a thousand dollars for that thing?’” Telitz quipped in a story posted on the Milwaukee Journal.

In discussing his artistic abilities, Telitz added, “I’m working at getting better. I’d like to be able to paint some animals, those types of things. I got a request from Alexander Rossi to see if I could paint his dog. Unfortunately I can’t do that yet.”

Further, in a partnership with The Styled Garage, Telitz is selling his own merchandise, and accepting donations, to help his cause.

Telitz finished fourth in Race 2 at Barber on Sunday, and sits seventh in the Indy Lights championship, 59 points behind leader Pato O’Ward.

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