Gustavo Menezes joins Carlin F3 Europe team, which is great news for both

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Consider this bit of news a win-win for up-and-coming American driver Gustavo Menezes and for fans of, potentially, an American one day making it to Formula One.

The 20-year-old California native, who had been in the Mazda Road to Indy ladder stateside before moving abroad to Europe, shifts from Van Amersfoort Racing to Carlin Racing for his second season in the FIA European Formula 3 Championship.

This championship has already produced Max Verstappen, who moves up to F1 next year with Scuderia Toro Rosso, and Esteban Ocon, who has tested for Lotus’ F1 team both in free practice one during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend and the postseason test last week.

But back to Menezes, who laid the groundwork for success in 2015 after finishing 11th as a rookie this season with two podium finishes, both third-place results. He also banked a top-10 finish at the prestigious year-end Macau Grand Prix, and had wins in German F3 prior to moving up to the overall European championship.

Moving to Carlin’s team – which maintains a European presence to go along with its newly announced U.S. effort in Indy Lights – should provide him an even better place to showcase his potential on the world stage.

“Carlin is a fantastic team who excel in every series they compete in,” Menezes said in a release. “The list of drivers they have run reads like the who’s who of motor racing and I look forward to working with the guys and doing everything I can to get some good results next season.

“Like all young American drivers I would love to be involved in F1, DTM, IndyCar or Sports cars – any of them would be a dream come true. That said, the only way I am going to get there is to win races. I have a great team in Carlin and I will be pushing as hard as I can to do that.”

Definitely note the name now. For 2015 it seems, given the financial straits endured for Caterham and Marussia that temporarily plagued Alexander Rossi’s F1 hopes, and given Conor Daly’s desire to race a full season in the Verizon IndyCar Series after a challenging GP2 Series season with Lazarus, Menezes is a rare American with a decent team and shot to impress on an international level.

Ganassi announces multiyear sponsorship extension with American Legion for No. 10

Chip Ganassi American Legion
David Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Chip Ganassi Racing announced a new primary sponsorship deal with The American Legion this week, shoring up the funding on its No. 10 Dallara-Honda of Alex Palou.

The 2021 NTT IndyCar Series champion primarily had driven with NTT Data sponsorship the past two seasons. But NTT Data will move next season to McLaren Racing as a primary sponsor for Felix Rosenqvist in 10 races and on the Indy 500 car of Tony Kanaan (who drove an American Legion car for Ganassi at the Brickyard last year).

It was the latest twist in a McLaren-Ganassi saga that included a contract dispute for the services of Palou (who is expected to move to McLaren in 2024 after reaching an agreement to race with Ganassi next year).

Ganassi stayed within its own walls to help plug the sponsorship gap left by NTT Data, re-signing The American Legion to a multiyear extension. The Indianapolis-based non-profit organization, which has been sponsoring Ganassi cars for the past few seasons, also will be associated with other Ganassi drivers, including Indy 500 winner Marcus Ericsson and development driver Kyffin Simpson in Indy NXT.

The Ganassi organization will continue promoting The American Legion’s “Be The One” campaign aimed at reducing veteran suicides. The team launched an online auction for the initiative this week.

“Supporting our nation’s veterans is of immense importance to our organization and we are humbled to continue supporting The American Legion’s mission in ending veteran suicide,” team owner Chip Ganassi said in a release. “We will do absolutely everything we can to help veterans get the support they need while raising public awareness of the ‘Be The One’ platform.”

“We have received an overwhelming amount of support from fans, active-duty military members and veterans as a result of this partnership and we’re pleased to see it grow,” said Dean Kessel, chief marketing officer at The American Legion. “Thanks to the continuous collaboration with the team’s other partners, and the promotion of the ‘Be The One’ initiative, we are discovering more ways to engage with the military community than ever before. We want all veterans to know that it’s okay to ask for help.”