Report: Andretti Sports Marketing adds ex-St. Pete race president

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Interesting story to pass on in the “business of racing” section this morning. Former Grand Prix of St. Petersburg president Tim Ramsberger is leaving the event to join Andretti Sports Marketing, per the Tampa Bay Times.

It marks the second high-profile departure from the St. Pete event in the last year; Honda also ended its title sponsorship prior to the 2014 race, but on that front, Firestone took over.

The St. Pete race – along with races in Toronto and Mid-Ohio – are run and operated by Green Savoree Racing Promotions, which sees former Andretti partners Kim Green and Kevin Savoree in charge on their own.

Andretti Sports Marketing, meanwhile, has quickly risen in the racing world. The organization promotes the Verizon IndyCar Series race at Milwaukee IndyFest, and also promotes races within Red Bull Global Rallycross (Volkswagen Rallycross DC) and FIA Formula E (planned Miami round).

Ramsberger told the Times he sees a better opportunity for himself within Andretti Sports Marketing, looking long-term.

“I think it’s a great opportunity and probably just a better opportunity for growth for me professionally long term,” he said.

Savoree told the Times not to worry and that plans are in place to keep the Green Savoree events running smoothly and with solid enough financial footing for the next several years.

The three Green Savoree events for IndyCar for 2014 are in the books – all of St. Pete, Toronto and Mid-Ohio had the unfortunate luck of rain falling on Saturday this year and races were either canceled (Pirelli World Challenge Round 1 at St. Pete) or postponed (IndyCar race 1 in Toronto). But race day crowds at each event looked healthy.

Meanwhile Andretti’s first IndyCar race of the year – Milwaukee – is next up on the schedule. It runs August 16-17 at the Milwaukee Mile.

Santino Ferrucci will drive No. 14 for AJ Foyt Racing full time in 2023 IndyCar season

Santino Ferrucci AJ Foyt
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Santino Ferrucci will return to full-time racing in the NTT IndyCar Series next season, joining AJ Foyt Racing.

Ferrucci had made eight IndyCar starts with three teams since his last full-time season in 2020 while also racing part time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this year.

He will drive the storied No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet for four-time Indy 500 winner A.J. Foyt’s team, which will field the car from its Waller, Texas headquarters.

“It’s incredibly exciting to be back in the INDYCAR Series full time,” Ferrucci said in a team release. “Being a part-time driver over the last two years has been hard for me, personally. I’m a race car driver, and I want to compete. Working with different teams has been exciting, and I’m proud that no matter which car I’ve raced, I’ve always shown speed and consistency. I couldn’t be more excited to join AJ Foyt Racing in the 14 Chevy. I can’t wait to make the best of it.”

Ferrucci, 24, had finished a career-best fourth in IndyCar four times, including the 104th Indy 500 in 2020. He was the 2019 Indy 500 rookie of the year with a sixth.

In nine Xfinity starts since 2021, Ferrucci has a career-best finish of 13th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

“I am thrilled to welcome Santino to the team,” Larry Foyt said in a release. “He’s shown a knack for getting toward the front of the field, and I think he is a racer who moves forward on race day. A.J. sees the fire in him and has enjoyed their meetings together. I think Santino’s experience will help his rookie teammate as well, so he is a great addition to our roster.”

Ferrucci will be teamed at AJ Foyt Racing with Benjamin Pedersen, who finished fifth in the 2022 Indy Lights standings. The team has yet to specify the number for Pedersen’s entry, which will be fielded out of its Indianapolis race shop.

Foyt’s two full-time drivers last season were Dalton Kellett and Kyle Kirkwood, who is moving to Andretti Autosport.