Taylor Swift to be featured on Tony Kanaan’s IndyCar in Detroit; will she make it to track?


DETROIT – Taylor Swift will be in Detroit this weekend, and will be making her maiden trip to an IndyCar race.

Well, not actual Taylor Swift. Yet, anyway.

But her likeness and image from her THE 1989 WORLD TOUR – which is set to occur in Detroit at 5 p.m. Saturday night at Ford Field – will be featured on 2013 Indianapolis 500 Tony Kanaan’s No. 10 Chevrolet in this weekends Chevrolet Indy Dual in Detroit Presented by Quicken Loans.

TK’s No. 10 car for Chip Ganassi Racing will take on a different look, as the Big Machine Records artist and her tour will be featured prominently on the car. Big Machine Records is the official entertainment partner of Chip Ganassi Racing Teams.

“Taylor Swift has become the biggest artist in the world and continues to shatter sales and airplay records as her historic The 1989 World Tour kicks into high gear in Detroit,” Scott Borchetta, Big Machine Records President, said in a release. “Indy 500 Champ Tony Kanaan knows a thing or two about high gears and will be racing for the wins this weekend with The 1989 World Tour livery taking over his #10 Chevy Indy Car.”

Will Swift make an appearance at the track? That remains to be determined.

Race fans who have followed Conor Daly, who will make his first doubleheader start in the No. 5 Arrow/Lucas Oil Schmidt Peterson Honda this weekend, will know that Daly is an unashamed, unabashed T-Swift fan.

So I pondered the other night on Twitter whether a T-Swift and Daly meet up could happen. This banter on Twitter followed.

The anticipation builds…

Interestingly this marks Kanaan’s third straight year with an alternate livery in Detroit. Hippino gray and green colors adorned Kanaan’s KV Racing Technology Chevrolet in 2013, and Energizer black was on “TK’s” Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet in 2014.

And, because I’m a nerd, this marks the first time a Swift has been in an IndyCar race since Tarso Marques finished seventh in a Swift chassis with a Ford Cosworth engine at the 2000 CART finale at Auto Club Speedway. The result was Marques’ best finish in the series.

Haters gonna hate if they don’t dig my obscure way of tying a cultural icon into North American open-wheel history.

IndyCar Power Rankings: Pato O’Ward moves to the top entering Texas Motor Speedway


The NBC Sports IndyCar power rankings naturally were as jumbled as the action on the streets of St. Petersburg after a chaotic opener to the 2023 season.

Pato O’Ward, who finished second because of an engine blip that cost him the lead with a few laps remaining, moves into the top spot ahead of St. Pete winner Marcus Ericsson and Alexander Rossi, who finished fourth in his Arrow McLaren debut. Scott Dixon and St. Pete pole-sitter Romain Grosjean (who led 31 laps) rounded out the top five.

St. Pete pole-sitter Romain Grosjean (who started first at St. Pete after capturing his second career pole position) Callum Ilott (a career-best fifth) and Graham Rahal entered the power rankings entering the season’s second race.

Three drivers fell out of the preseason top 10 after the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg – including previously top-ranked Josef Newgarden, who finished 17th after qualifying 14th.

Heading into Sunday’s race at Texas Motor Speedway, here’s NBC Sports’ assessment of the current top 10 drivers through the first of 17 races this year (with previous preseason rankings in parenthesis):

NBC Sports’ IndyCar Power Rankings

1. Pato O’Ward (5) – If not for the dreaded “plenum event” in the No. 5 Chevrolet, the Arrow McLaren driver is opening the season with a victory capping a strong race weekend.

2. Marcus Ericsson (7) – He might be the most opportunistic driver in IndyCar, but that’s because the 2022 Indy 500 winner has become one of the series’ fastest and most consistent stars.

3. Alexander Rossi (10) – He overcame a frustrating Friday and mediocre qualifying to open his Arrow McLaren career with the sort of hard-earned top five missing in his last years at Andretti.

4. Scott Dixon (3) – Put aside his opening-lap skirmish with former teammate Felix Rosenqvist, and it was a typically stealthily good result for the six-time champion.

5. Romain Grosjean (NR) – The St. Petersburg pole-sitter consistently was fastest on the streets of St. Petersburg over the course of the race weekend, which he couldn’t say once last year.

6. Scott McLaughlin (6) – Easily the best of the Team Penske drivers before his crash with Grosjean, McLaughlin drove like a legitimate 2023 championship contender.

7. Callum Ilott (NR) – A quietly impressive top five for the confident Brit in Juncos Hollinger Racing’s first race as a two-car team. Texas will be a big oval litmus test.

8. Graham Rahal (NR) – Sixth at St. Pete, Rahal still has the goods on street courses, and Rahal Letterman Lanigan remains headed in the right direction.

9. Alex Palou (4) – He seemed a step behind Ericsson and Dixon in the race after just missing the Fast Six in qualifying, but this was a solid start for Palou.

10. Will Power (2) – An uncharacteristic mistake that crashed Colton Herta put a blemish on the type of steady weekend that helped him win the 2022 title.

Falling out (last week): Josef Newgarden (1), Colton Herta (8), Christian Lundgaard (9)