IndyCar notes: Planned tests, Coyne, Barracuda driver updates

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Not much going on in the IZOD IndyCar Series world until a manufacturer test at Sonoma next week in advance of the next round of the season. But there are a few tidbits of note:

  • Three teams – Chip Ganassi Racing, Team Penske and Panther Racing – were slated to test Wednesday. Ganassi planned Iowa while the latter two were set to test at Sebring. Ganassi’s current streak of four straight wins came after a Sebring test in late June. Details from the two power teams, and their drivers, were nonexistent. Meanwhile Panther had Oriol Servia on hand again at Sebring. The Catalan hasn’t been confirmed for any further races but is likely to split duties with Ryan Briscoe for the rest of the year. Briscoe is expected back at Sonoma for IndyCar and will likely resume his American Le Mans Series commitments with Level 5 Motorsports at Baltimore the following week.
  • Bryan Herta told Autosport’s Mark Glendenning that Luca Filippi is in the frame for further drives with the team later this season as Barracuda Racing continues evaluating its 2014 driver prospects. Additionally, Glendenning reported that Dale Coyne Racing may test unheralded Japanese driver Ryo Hirakawa, a 19-year-old who won the Japanese Formula 3 title last year. It’s been a while since Coyne has gone the “obscure as all get out second driver” route, so it’s good to see he still has that in him.
  • One of the drivers confirmed to make his debut for Coyne this year, Stefan Wilson, had his seat fitting at the Illinois shop earlier this week. The younger, but taller brother of Justin will make his debut at Baltimore.