Reports: Davison poised to be 33rd entry to Indy 500

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Via multiple reports, including Dave Furst of Indianapolis ABC affiliate WRTV and Indianapolis Star reporter Curt Cavin among others, Australian James Davison is set to be the 33rd entry for this year’s Indianapolis 500.

The reports have Davison in a fourth KV Racing Technology entry, joining full season entrants Sebastien Bourdais and Sebastian Saavedra, and previously announced third driver Townsend Bell, who is also an NBCSN IndyCar analyst.

Davison made a pair of Verizon IndyCar Series starts in 2013 in Dale Coyne Racing’s second car, at Mid-Ohio and Sonoma. He impressed in both given limited testing time.

There’s more than meets the eye to this in terms of Bell, Davison, their 2014 full season commitments and a shared partner.

Bell will have support from Royal Purple on his No. 6 Robert Graham – Royal Purple – Beneteau USA Chevrolet, as he seeks to make his eighth Indianapolis 500 start. The synthetic motor oil also supports Bell’s No. 555 AIM Autosport Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 in the GT Daytona class of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.

Meanwhile one of Royal Purple’s other teams it supports is TRG-AMR North America – Davison’s squad in GT Daytona of the TUDOR Championship.

Per Cavin, the proposed No. 33 Chevrolet will be on a short-week program, and the team is yet officially confirm this will happen.

But when you look at who’s already associated with the various entities, it makes more sense.

The 32nd car, incidentally, is the aforementioned Coyne second car which has been driven in the first three races of 2014 by Colombian rookie Carlos Huertas. Huertas completed his Rookie Orientation Program today and is likely to be confirmed to the team’s No. 18 Honda for the Indianapolis 500.

AJ Foyt Racing promotes Benjamin Pedersen from Indy Lights to IndyCar for 2023 season

Benjamin Pedersen AJ Foyt
AJ Foyt Racing
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Benjamin Pedersen is the first driver to land a promotion from Indy Lights into IndyCar for next season as AJ Foyt Racing confirmed Wednesday he’ll be part of its 2023 lineup.

Pedersen, a 23-year-old dual citizen of Denmark and the United States, spent last season running the full Indy Lights schedule for HMD Motorsports. Linus Lundqvist, his teammate, won the Lights title, and Pedersen finished fifth in the final standings. Pedersen earned his only win earlier this month when he led every lap from the pole at Portland.

Pedersen also ran four races for HMD in 2021 with back-to-back runner-up finishes in his debut. Pedersen landed on AJ Foyt Racing team president Larry Foyt’s radar through a “trusted colleague” and Pedersen spent most of last season shadowing the IndyCar team.

His promotion to IndyCar comes ahead of all four drivers who finished ahead of him in the Indy Lights standings, including champion Lundqvist.

“We are really looking forward to having Benjamin as part of the team,” Larry Foyt said. “His enthusiasm is infectious, and he is 100 percent committed to IndyCar, AJ Foyt Racing, and doing the best he can to win races.

“It’s been great to have him embedded with the team this past season, and everyone is excited to hit the ground running when testing begins. It is also great to have a multi-year program in place, which will help him and the team grow together.”

Foyt did not announce a car number for Pedersen. Kyle Kirkwood spent his rookie season driving AJ Foyt’s flagship No. 14 but Kirkwood is moving to Andretti Autosport. The team has not yet announced if Dalton Kellett will return for a fourth season, and a third car for Tatiana Calderon was pulled from competition after seven races because of sponsorship non-payment. Shutting down Calderon’s team removed the only semi-regular female driver from the IndyCar field.

Pedersen, however, was signed to an agreement Foyt said “spans multiple seasons as the team plans to develop the young rookie and is aligned to a longer-term plan for AJ Foyt Racing.”

Pedersen was born in Copenhagen but raised in Seattle and currently lives in Indianapolis. He said his time shadowing the IndyCar team has given him a jump on his rookie preparations.

“I’ve spent a lot of time this season with AJ Foyt Racing learning the ins and outs of making the jump to IndyCar and it’s been really nice to do that in conjunction with my Indy Lights season,” Pedersen said. “IndyCar has been my target goal since I started open wheel racing in 2016. The racing, atmosphere, fans, events, tracks, etc. are all awesome.”