Alexander Rossi confirms return to GP2 in 2015 with Racing Engineering

3 Comments

American racer Alexander Rossi has confirmed today that he will return to the GP2 Series in 2015, joining Spanish outfit Racing Engineering alongside Britain’s Jordan King.

Rossi was the Rookie of the Year in GP2 in 2013, claiming a feature race win for Caterham Racing in Abu Dhabi as he balanced his commitments with a reserve role at Caterham F1 Team.

However, the team’s financial woes meant that Rossi was dropped after just five rounds of the season, and despite taking part in one further round for Campos Racing, he did not race in the second half of the year.

The Californian did secure a reserve role at Marussia F1 Team for the rest of the season, and despite coming close to making his F1 debut on five occasions, he failed to line up on the grid due to the team’s financial collapse following the Russian Grand Prix.

Rossi will now return to GP2 for 2015, confirming today that he has joined Racing Engineering.

“After several years of discussions, at last Racing Engineering and I have found a way to work together,” Rossi said in a statement. “Racing Engineering is a multiple championship-winning GP2 team, and their passion and commitment to excellence reflects throughout the organization, where winning and performance is the sole focus.

“After my 2014 season as the official reserve driver at the Caterham and Marussia F1 Teams, it is public knowledge that I have been carefully looking over several options for 2015, both in Europe and the States. I’ve spent the majority of my career racing in Europe, building my racing foundation and have strong relationships there. My ultimate goal has never wavered, and still remains F1.

“The GP2 Championship with Racing Engineering is the perfect alignment for these career objectives. The team and I have a strong mutual belief in each other and believe we have the assets and the combination to win the championship this year.”

Rossi will make his debut for the team at the first GP2 pre-season test, taking place in Abu Dhabi in two weeks’ time.

Australia SuperCar Champion gets IndyCar Test at Team Penske

GETTY IMAGES
GETTY Images
Leave a comment

Scott McLaughlin’s latest reward for winning the 2019 Virgin Australia SuperCar championship is an INDYCAR test at Team Penske.

“Scott has been incredibly successful for DJR Team Penske over the last three seasons and he has become a true champion of our sport,” said team owner Roger Penske, who will become the owner of INDYCAR, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Indianapolis 500 in early January. “He certainly embraces new challenges and we think this is a great opportunity to utilize the IndyCar Series rookie testing program so Scott can experience what it is like to get behind the wheel of one of our Indy cars.”

McLaughlin, who has scored back-to-back Virgin Australia Supercars Champion for DJR Team Penske (DJRTP), will participate in an INDYCAR Rookie Evaluation test at Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Fla. on Monday, January 13.

“I am always open to new challenges and I’m thankful to Team Penske for providing this opportunity to test an Indy car,” said McLaughlin, who established a new Supercars single season record with 18 victories this past season. “We had an amazing year in 2019 and I’m looking forward to defending our Supercars championship next season. I’m also excited to grow as a driver and being with Team Penske creates cool opportunities to try something new. Although I have spent a few hours in a simulator earlier this year, it’s going to be a blast to see what one really feels like at a place like Sebring.”

McLaughlin joined DJR Team Penske in 2017 as one of the brightest stars in Supercars. He has produced 35 victories and 44 pole positions over the last three seasons while helping DJRTP claim team championships in 2017 and 2019, the driver’s title each of the last two seasons and the legendary Bathurst 1000 race in October, along with co-driver Alex Premat.

McLaughlin will defend his Supercars title for DJRTP in 2020 in the No. 17 Shell V-Power Ford Mustang.  He will build on his already successful racing career by driving a full-sized open-wheel car for the first time.

Team Penske enjoyed another successful IndyCar Series season in 2019. The team earned its record 18th Indianapolis 500 victory as Simon Pagenaud captured the checkered flag in May, while Josef Newgarden won his second series title in three years and the team’s 16th INDYCAR Championship. Team Penske will once again compete with three full-season entries in 2020, featuring series champion drivers Newgarden, Pagenaud and Will Power.

Team Penske is one of the most successful teams in the history of professional sports. Cars owned and prepared by Team Penske have produced more than 540 major race wins, over 620 pole positions and 37 Championships across open-wheel, stock car and sports car racing competition. Over the course of its 53-year history, the team has also earned 18 Indianapolis 500 victories, two Daytona 500 Championships, a Formula 1 win, overall victories in the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring along with a win in Australia’s legendary Bathurst 1000 race. Team Penske currently competes in the IndyCar Series, the NASCAR Cup Series, the NASCAR Xfinity Series and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. The team also races in the Virgin Australia SuperCars Championship, in a partnership with Dick Johnson Racing, as DJR Team Penske.

Follow Bruce Martin on Twitter at @BruceMartin_500