Briscoe expected to continue in SPM car for balance of IndyCar season post-Toronto

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LE MANS, France – The Schmidt Peterson Motorsports team hasn’t confirmed it officially, but it is likely that Ryan Briscoe will be in the No. 5 Arrow/Lucas Oil Schmidt Peterson Honda for the final six races of the Verizon IndyCar Series season, after he misses this weekend’s upcoming Honda Indy in Toronto.

Conor Daly will fill in for Briscoe while he races this week with Corvette Racing at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. So Briscoe would race at Auto Club Speedway on June 27 through to the season finale in Sonoma August 30, unless James Hinchcliffe is cleared and ready to go at some point.

Briscoe has partnered with Jan Magnussen and Antonio Garcia in the Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup rounds of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, and thus far opened the year with wins at the Rolex 24 at Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

Briscoe confirmed talks with the SPM team, and formal confirmation should come shortly.

“Yeah we’ve talked. It’s definitely the plan to be finishing out the year with those guys,” Briscoe told MotorSportsTalk during scrutineering at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The news would undoubtedly be unfortunate for Daly, who like Briscoe has also impressed while filling in for the injured Hinchcliffe.

Hinchcliffe has not yet been issued a timetable of when he may be able to return to the cockpit following his injuries sustained in practice for the Indianapolis 500. We may know more on Wednesday, when a conference call with the “Mayor of Hinchtown” is scheduled.

As for Briscoe, he expanded on his Texas drive earlier today.

“Yeah I mean it was a tough race. It was all about who would suffer the least (on tires), and I didn’t quite have enough for the top four guys,” he said.

“But we were better than a lot of good cars out there. We moved our way up into the top four or five at one point. We got beaten by the Andretti boys on fuel strategy; a bit frustrating because we were better than those guys. But it was a really good race for us.”

It was also a good weekend for Briscoe, who got to see his family in Austin on the same weekend as the X Games were taking place there. His wife, Nicole, was working the event.

Briscoe had originally planned to stay in Europe from the Le Mans Test Day through to race week, but a training program in Italy was scrapped so Briscoe could go back to Texas.

“I’d rather be in Texas,” he said.

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.