Kurt Busch’s confirmation this morning he’ll be racing in this year’s Indianapolis 500, as he’ll attempt the Indy-Charlotte double on Memorial Day, is likely going to be the biggest official news of the day in IndyCar. But it will be far from the only piece of potential news.
- Cosworth CEO Hal Reisiger is having meetings today with INDYCAR officials to determine the next step in the process of Cosworth re-entering the IndyCar engine game, as it seeks to partner with an OEM.
- Later tonight, the Long Beach City Council will hold a closed-session meeting to determine whether it will continue its long-standing lease with the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach LLC (they want a five-year extension, per the Long Beach Press-Telegram) or whether to open up the bidding process as Formula One organizers seek a return.
- Schmidt Peterson Motorsports tests today at Homestead-Miami Speedway, with Mikhail Aleshin and Simon Pagenaud. After the test, Pagenaud will fly to France tonight to race in Rallye de la Vienne, near his hometown, in a Peugeot 207 S2000.
- Maybe Dale Coyne names his second driver or Bryan Herta his first one? Probably not, but they’re still yet to be officially revealed with only a little more than three weeks until the season opener in St. Petersburg, and only a week and a half until the official preseason test at Barber Motorsports Park.
Juncos Racing continued to bolster its entries in the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires by signing Carlos Cunha to pilot a third Juncos Pro Mazda entry for 2018. Cunha, who finished third in the 2017 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda season on the back of seven podium finishes, joins Rinus VeeKay and Robert Megennis in Juncos’ Pro Mazda lineup for 2018.
Cunha previously tested with the team at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in October and joined Juncos for the Chris Griffis Memorial test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in November, testing cars for both the Pro Mazda and Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires teams.
“It’s great to become a part of Juncos Racing,” said the 18-year-old Cunha. “I am really excited to start the 2018 season with Juncos Racing. This fall we did some testing together and from there I was able to see how focused everyone on the team is and I even felt like I became a part of their family in no time. I am confident we will get great results together next year and I look forward to learning and growing more with the team. It will be a huge pleasure and also a great responsibility to carry the number one on my car, thanks to (2017 Pro Mazda champion Victor Franzoni) and I hope to deliver it back to the team at the end of the year!”
Team owner Ricardo Juncos added, “We are excited to add Carlos to our Pro Mazda lineup. From the moment we started testing with him in early October, we knew he would be a great fit for our team. Carlos has been very quick in testing and even had an impressive showing in the Indy Lights car at the Chris Griffis test back in October. He had a great run this past season in the Pro Mazda series and we are confident he will carry that momentum into the 2018 season.”