Oliver Eriksson wins GRC Lites crown as Alex Keyes claims Las Vegas finale

Photo: Olsbergs MSE

LAS VEGAS – Olsbergs MSE secured the GRC Lites championship in the season finale in Las Vegas, with 16-year-old Swedish rookie Oliver Eriksson emerging ahead of his teammate, 17-year-old American rising star Austin Cindric.

Cindric entered the finale three points clear of his teammate. However, a chaotic first lap left Cindric high-sided and beached in a dirt section of the course, as Eriksson snuck ahead and the third title contender, Dreyer & Reinbold’s Miles Maroney, also lost ground.

With Cindric stuck and eliminated, and Maroney also retiring later in the race, Eriksson brought home his No. 16 car to the flag in third place to secure the championship, and round out OMSE’s banner day. The team went 1-2 in the Supercars finale with Joni Wiman leading Sebastian Eriksson.

“I hoped at the beginning of the season that I might be able to get a race win this year and now I’m standing here a champion,” Oliver Eriksson said, via OMSE’s post-race release. “This means everything to me.”

D&R managed a small consolation in the race itself, Alex Keyes taking a dominant victory over another OMSE driver in Andreas Wernersson.

The race was delayed until after the Supercars race, due to changing weather conditions and a schedule adjustment.

Ganassi announces multiyear sponsorship extension with American Legion for No. 10

Chip Ganassi American Legion
David Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Chip Ganassi Racing announced a new primary sponsorship deal with The American Legion this week, shoring up the funding on its No. 10 Dallara-Honda of Alex Palou.

The 2021 NTT IndyCar Series champion primarily had driven with NTT Data sponsorship the past two seasons. But NTT Data will move next season to McLaren Racing as a primary sponsor for Felix Rosenqvist in 10 races and on the Indy 500 car of Tony Kanaan (who drove an American Legion car for Ganassi at the Brickyard last year).

It was the latest twist in a McLaren-Ganassi saga that included a contract dispute for the services of Palou (who is expected to move to McLaren in 2024 after reaching an agreement to race with Ganassi next year).

Ganassi stayed within its own walls to help plug the sponsorship gap left by NTT Data, re-signing The American Legion to a multiyear extension. The Indianapolis-based non-profit organization, which has been sponsoring Ganassi cars for the past few seasons, also will be associated with other Ganassi drivers, including Indy 500 winner Marcus Ericsson and development driver Kyffin Simpson in Indy NXT.

The Ganassi organization will continue promoting The American Legion’s “Be The One” campaign aimed at reducing veteran suicides. The team launched an online auction for the initiative this week.

“Supporting our nation’s veterans is of immense importance to our organization and we are humbled to continue supporting The American Legion’s mission in ending veteran suicide,” team owner Chip Ganassi said in a release. “We will do absolutely everything we can to help veterans get the support they need while raising public awareness of the ‘Be The One’ platform.”

“We have received an overwhelming amount of support from fans, active-duty military members and veterans as a result of this partnership and we’re pleased to see it grow,” said Dean Kessel, chief marketing officer at The American Legion. “Thanks to the continuous collaboration with the team’s other partners, and the promotion of the ‘Be The One’ initiative, we are discovering more ways to engage with the military community than ever before. We want all veterans to know that it’s okay to ask for help.”