INDYCAR, sanctioning body of the Verizon IndyCar Series, has confirmed a three-year extension with chassis constructor Dallara through 2020.
Without saying this outright, this basically confirms the continuation of the base Dallara DW12 chassis for several more years to come, as the new single supplier bodywork kit will be revealed for the 2018 season. In a release, INDYCAR also confirmed teams will be given more control and flexibility over their parts.
Manufacturer aero kits were introduced in 2015, with changes having come to Honda and Chevrolet’s kits for year two and the manufacturer kits frozen for 2017.
Dallara has been in IndyCar since 1997, so this year marks the 20th anniversary of the partnership. Its U.S. base is in Speedway, Ind.
“Dallara’s continued participation in our sport provides INDYCAR and our competitors a tremendous amount of confidence,” said Jay Frye, INDYCAR President, Competition and Operations. “Dallara has been an instrumental partner in the Verizon IndyCar Series for 20 years and we are excited to extend our relationship with them.”
“The signature of this contract is a natural extension of an intensive working relationship that has been continuing since 1997,” said Giampaolo Dallara, founder and president of Dallara Automobili. “We are pleased to continue to contribute to the great success that this series deserves.”
Bad news continues to come out of the Monster Energy / Pro Circuit Kawasaki team as they announced Jo Shimoda injured his shoulder in a practice session and will not mount up when the Monster Energy Supercross 250 East division opens in Houston, Texas on February 4. A timetable has not been given for Shimoda’s return, but a press release from the team references multiple weeks.
“I’m doing my best to focus forward on my return to racing,” said Shimoda in the release. “Our goal was to compete for the 250 Supercross Eastern Regional Championship and I know we had been doing the right work to make that happen. Unfortunately, this crash will cause me to miss the start of the season, but I still aim to be back on the track racing for wins before the end of Supercross.”
Shimoda is joined on the sidelines by teammates Seth Hammaker and Austin Forkner, who also suffered injuries in recent weeks.
The news of Hammaker’s sidelining came just two days ago. His wrist injury is sufficient to require surgery, so he too will miss multiple weeks. Hammaker was scheduled to compete in the 250 East division alongside Shimoda.
Forkner was involved in a Lap 1 crash in the 250 West season opener at Anaheim. Multiple injuries, including an ACL tear, will sideline him for the remainder of the season. He described the injury and its aftermath on Instagram.
Forkner will be relieved by Carson Mumford, but not before that rider’s wrist has healed sufficiently. He is scheduled to debut with Kawasaki in Oakland for the rescheduled Round 2 Supercross race on February 18.
Shimoda finished fourth in the 2022 Supercross 250 West division and was second in 2021 points in 250 East. In 2021, Shimoda won his first Supercross race at Salt Lake City. Last year, he scored one podium and six top-fives in nine starts.
Shimoda finished second in last year’s outdoor Lucas Oil Pro Motocross season, where he added two more SuperMotocross wins including the Unadilla Nationals that kicked off a four-race streak of first- or second-place results.
Kawasaki is not the only team facing injury. Red Bull KTM initially reported Marvin Musquin would be out for the San Diego round with a wrist injury and “maybe more”. This week it was announced he will miss this week’s Triple Crown race in Anaheim and “at least the next several rounds.”