Photo: Harding Racing, Gabby Chaves Instagram

Gabby Chaves, Harding Racing reveal No. 88 livery for Indy 500

1 Comment

Harding Racing has revealed its livery for this year’s 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil, as the group owned by Mike Harding and managed by Larry Curry is set to make its debut in the race with 2014 Indy Lights champion and 2015 IndyCar/Indianapolis 500 rookie-of-the-year Gabby Chaves.

The team made its first test last month at Texas Motor Speedway in a bare carbon No. 88 car, before revealing the livery yesterday.

Chaves’ No. 88 Chevrolet takes on a white and light blue livery to match the logo for Harding’s asphalt and concrete contractor business, Harding Group.

More notably, the styling of the No. 88 is close to that of NASCAR star Dale Earnhardt Jr., with the angled red number nearly identical.

Harding has said the No. 88 has a special meaning to him and Byrd Racing, sponsor for the late Bryan Clauson in last year’s Indianapolis 500 with Dale Coyne Racing, graciously released the number back to INDYCAR for Harding’s use in 2017.

This isn’t the first time in recent years an Indianapolis 500 entry has had a similar font for its number as a NASCAR driver. Two years ago, Jeff Gordon was in his final season driving in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, and NBCSN IndyCar analyst Townsend Bell paid tribute to that on his No. 24 Chevrolet with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing with a similarly styled No. 24 logo and font on his car.

When the number was tweeted at Earnhardt Jr., he approved of it writing, “That’s so cool.”

As for Chaves, here’s the social posts of the car’s reveal, below:

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
Leave a comment

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.

Follow@KyleMLavigne