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Ed Jones to test IndyCar for Rahal Letterman Lanigan at Watkins Glen

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Ed Jones, who is currently ranked second in the Indy Lights Series, will climb back into an IndyCar during Thursday’s open test at Watkins Glen International.

The 21-year-old Dubai resident and Great Britain native will join Graham Rahal and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, for which he also tested with last year at Sonoma Raceway.

“I’m really looking forward to getting back in an IndyCar and assisting Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing with their test at Watkins Glen,” Jones said. “With our goal being to race in IndyCar full-time next year, every chance I get to drive is very beneficial so I’d like to thank the team for this opportunity.

“After the successful day we had together last year (at Sonoma), it will be nice to work with some familiar faces and push even harder.

“Not only that, but having never been there before, it will also be useful to get a sneak preview of Watkins Glen before we compete there in Indy Lights next month.”

Ed Jones will test for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in an IndyCar test Thursday at Watkins Glen International in upstate New York.

Jones had an outstanding Indy Lights rookie season in 2015, capturing three wins and seven podium finishes in 16 starts, finishing the season ranked third overall.

Through the first 15 Indy Lights races of 2016, Jones has two wins, six podiums and is currently ranked second in the season standings, just 16 points behind series leader Santiago Urrutia.

RLL Racing team manager Ricardo Nault is looking forward to working again with Jones as much as the latter is looking forward to work again with RLL.

“We had the opportunity to run Ed at Sonoma last year and he impressed us with his professional approach, feedback and speed,” Nault said. “At the Watkins Glen event we will utilize these talents to work through our planned test items.

“I’m confident Ed will help us improve our chassis set up, which will give Graham (Rahal) a stronger foundation to build upon.”

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Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.