Neil Alberico back for second Indy Lights season with Carlin

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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Californian Neil Alberico will be back for his second season of Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires competition, completing the four-car lineup for Carlin this season.

Alberico provides the team a veteran hand as he’ll have three new teammates. Bogged down by repeated electrical and mechanical issues last year, the race winner and season runner-up in both Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda and Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires in the first two rungs of the Mazda Road to Indy presented by Cooper Tires wasn’t able to showcase his full potential.

With Rising Star Racing support, Alberico’s Carlin’s lone holdover from 2016. Zachary Claman De Melo moves over from Juncos Racing, Garth Rickards steps up from USF2000 and Matheus Leist arrives from British F3.

“I’m excited to be back with Carlin for my second year in Indy Lights. The entire team has invested a lot of time and energy into my career, and I couldn’t be happier to continue our relationship together in 2017. Of course a big thanks goes to Art Wilmes and Rising Star Racing for sticking with me for all these years. Without RSR’s continued support I would never have the opportunity to compete at the level I am today. Now we aim to go and fight for some wins.”

Alberico is the 13th confirmed driver for 2017 and the field for St. Petersburg will be at least 14 cars, if not more.

Pro Mazda champion Aaron Telitz is likely to be confirmed at Belardi Auto Racing in the coming days, in a Soul Red liveried Mazda thanks to his scholarship for winning the championship.

If Juncos and/or Pelfrey adds another car, that would move the car count to either 15 or 16 for the season-opening weekend in St. Petersburg.

The Indy Lights grid so far:

  • Carlin: Garth Rickards, Matheus Leist, Zachary Claman De Melo, Neil Alberico
  • Andretti Autosport: Dalton Kellett, Nico Jamin, Ryan Norman
  • Andretti Steinbrenner Racing: Colton Herta
  • Belardi Auto Racing: Santiago Urrutia, Shelby Blackstock
  • Juncos Racing: Kyle Kaiser, Nicolas Dapero
  • Team Pelfrey: Juan Piedrahita