After a one-year hiatus, the previous year’s Indy Lights champion has been confirmed for a full season in the Verizon IndyCar Series.
Colombian American Gabby Chaves, who edged Jack Harvey for this past year’s Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires title on tiebreaker, has been confirmed in the No. 98 Bryan Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian entry.
“I’m so excited and honored to be the latest Colombian driver in Indycar!” Chaves said. “Our country has such a great history in the sport and especially at the Indianapolis 500 with drivers like Roberto Guerrero, Juan Pablo Montoya, and Carlos Munoz – I can’t wait to make my own history there!”
Toronto-based David Bowen continues his partnership in the No. 98 entry that began in 2012. Corporate partners for the team will be revealed in a series of upcoming announcements.
Herta enjoyed success early last year with rookie Jack Hawksworth, who was a qualifying star in the early races of the year, led 31 laps at the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis and scored a podium at Houston race two. He extolled Chaves’ potential.
“Recent experience has shown that top drivers graduating from Indy Lights have transitioned to IndyCar with great success. We have had the opportunity to work with a few rookie drivers in the last couple years and we believe we have a great environment to support their development and achieve great results.”
Chaves tested for Herta and Schmidt Peterson this offseason and is the second rookie confirmed for 2015, but the first for a full season (Luca Filippi will run road and street races for CFH Racing). Further rookies are anticipated to join the Sunoco Rookie-of-the-Year class.
“We’re excited to have Gabby join the team this year,” Herta said. “In December we had the opportunity to test him at Sebring and his speed and feedback were very impressive. Gabby has the skills and mindset to make a real impact in Indycar, I see no reason why Gabby should not be a top contender for Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors.”