IndyCar: Simona de Silvestro confirmed in fourth Andretti entry for St. Pete

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We have an answer to the fourth car at Andretti Autosport puzzle, and it’s Simona de Silvestro.

The fan favorite, who raced full-time in the Verizon IndyCar Series from 2010 through 2013, will return to the series in what will be a one-off race with Andretti at the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Further races may be possible.

Still, this represents de Silvestro’s best chance yet in IndyCar after previous stints with KV Racing Technology and HVM Racing.

De Silvestro is something of a St. Pete specialist, having finished fourth in 2011 and posting a career-best start of third and solid finish of sixth in 2013.

“I am very excited to be joining Andretti Autosport and to become part of a team with such a successful history,” de Silvestro said. “It feels really special to have been given this opportunity to drive for them. I also want to thank Michael for believing in me and I can’t wait to start working with the team. Also, I am looking forward to get back behind the wheel of an Indy car.”

Added team owner Michael Andretti, “We are really excited to have Simona come on board with the team for St. Pete. She will be a great fit for the team, and hopefully we’ll be able to build on the program, eventually taking it from this race to future events and maybe even a full-season relationship. Fans should stay connected with the team to hear more about our potential future with Simona.”

With tree in tow, Robert Wickens is already in the Christmas spirit

Robert Wickens' official Twitter page
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It may be a week before Thanksgiving, but IndyCar driver Robert Wickens is already obviously in a festive Christmas mood.

Wickens took to Twitter and Instagram Wednesday to post a video showing he just gave himself an early yuletide present: a Christmas tree:

“Got myself a tree! I figured it’s time to get into the Christmas spirit! It’s a very real tree and my arms are itchy to prove it!”

He even ended his tweet with a Christmas tree emoji.

And for good measure, Wickens — wearing a winter ski cap with his name on it — and some of the staff at his rehab facility broke into an impromptu version of “Oh, Christmas Tree!”

Check out what Wickens posted and enjoy a little early Christmas cheer sure to put a smile on your face: