At least two of the three and possibly four Chip Ganassi Racing driver/engineer combinations will be different in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series season.
Per both IndyCar.com and RACER.com, Scott Dixon’s longtime engineer Eric Bretzman will move onto the CGR NASCAR program, and Chris Simmons will move over from the No. 10 car to engineer Dixon’s No. 9 Target Chevrolet. Simmons, a former driver before his engineering career began, has most recently worked with Dario Franchitti and Tony Kanaan.
Kanaan will now have Todd Malloy, formerly of Bryan Herta Autosport, on his No. 10 NTT Data Chevrolet. Malloy’s recent drivers worked with include Jack Hawksworth, Alex Tagliani and Dan Wheldon, and he’s considered one of the more underrated engineers in the paddock.
Brad Goldberg will stick with Charlie Kimball for the 2015 season. Sage Karam, who is yet to be officially confirmed, would seem set to inherit Kanaan’s longtime engineer Eric Cowdin for the fourth car.
All comments all offseason have pegged CGR as still running four cars, but Karam made no secret of the fact that at the Rolex 24 at Daytona he was still hoping to impress in an audition for a full-time ride.
ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).
“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.
“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”
For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.
“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.
“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”
Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.
“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.