Coyne jokes about TBA for his second car; all but confirms Pippa Mann for fourth at Indy 500

Associated Press
0 Comments

Dale Coyne is notorious, legendary or both for holding his cards close to his vest about the identity of his second driver for his full-time entry in the Verizon IndyCar Series. We’ve poked fun at TBA before.

This year, that TBA will be the No. 19 car, with Conor Daly confirmed earlier Friday in the No. 18 Jonathan Byrd’s Racing Honda, and Bryan Clauson added in an extra car for the Indianapolis 500.

Coyne though went with the joke during today’s announcement at the Performance Racing Industry trade show, which was brilliant.

“I think we’ll know by the Thursday of St. Petersburg,” Coyne told assembled reporters to much laughter.

He also looks set to retain his 2015 oval driver and four-time Indianapolis 500 starter, Pippa Mann, in a fourth Coyne entry for the Indianapolis 500, which would make sense for all parties.

Without making it a full confirmation, Coyne said the plan is four cars at Indy and specifically mentioned Mann as the fourth driver.

And with Daly and Clauson having a combined four¬†Indianapolis 500 starts between them – Daly’s 2015 start barely counts as his engine grenaded before the green flag, and Clauson has failed to finish both – they’ll need an experienced driver somewhere in the team, and Mann’s pedigree and history with the team would pay dividends.

Mann has started the last three Indianapolis 500s with Coyne, the last two with support and partnership from Susan G. Komen.

So, now, officially, we have entered the most important portion of the IndyCar offseason.

The countdown has officially begun to see who kicks TBA out of his or her most elusive debut next spring in the second Coyne car.