Jack Harvey confirmed by Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in 2022 IndyCar lineup


Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing confirmed the worst-kept secret in IndyCar on Monday when Jack Harvey was officially added to its 2022 lineup. The team announced a multiyear deal with the British driver.

Harvey had been assumed to be headed to Rahal since August, when he informed Meyer Shank Racing he was leaving at the end of his fifth season with the team. Michael Shank had built MSR around the 28-year-old driver and planned to expand to two cars next year with Harvey and Helio Castroneves.

Instead, Harvey declined a contract extension and upstart MSR named Simon Pagenaud as Harvey’s replacement for next year. MSR won its first IndyCar race this season, the Indianapolis 500 with Castroneves.

Harvey chose a move to Rahal, which also is expanding as it heads into its 31st season.

“I’ve been working towards this moment for my entire career,” Harvey said. “This is an exciting next chapter and I can’t wait to see what lies ahead.”

Harvey will drive the new No. 45 Honda sponsored by Hy-Vee. The supermarket chain in under two seasons has fully committed to Rahal and IndyCar, and is a huge part of Rahal’s expansion from two cars to three full-season entries.

Harvey will team with Graham Rahal, as well as a driver not yet named in its third car. The team parted last week with two-time Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato after four seasons of Sato driving the No. 30 Honda.

“I’m eager to get to work with Graham and the entire team,” Harvey said. “We have common goals of competing for wins and championships, and I’m confident we’ll be contending from the drop of the green flag next year.”

Harvey won six races over two seasons in Indy Lights, where he was runner-up in the standings in both 2014 and 2015. Shank in 2017 debuted his IndyCar team over three races for Harvey.

MSR doubled to six races the next season, 10 races in 2019 and the full IndyCar schedule the last two years. Harvey finished 12th in the IndyCar standings this season. He has one podium finish in 49 starts and was a career-best ninth in the 2020 Indy 500.

He moves to another growing team in Rahal, which has been boosted by Hy-Vee’s commitment to the open-wheel series and next year will move into a new 115,000-square foot shop in Zionsville, Indiana.

Hy-Vee first joined Rahal as primary sponsor of Graham Rahal’s car for a 2020 race at Iowa Speedway and as primary sponsor for Spencer Pigot at that year’s Indy 500. The company boosted its funding to nine races this past season, then committed to the full 2022 season and signed as the title sponsor for IndyCar’s return to Iowa for a doubleheader following a one-year hiatus.

Iowa Speedway is located not far from Hy-Vee’s headquarters in Des Moines.

“Hy-Vee has massively committed to elevating IndyCar as a series and I’m honored to be representing their brand on track in the No. 45,” Harvey said.

Three different drivers piloted the No. 45 this past season in what was believed to be tryouts for the seat. Santino Ferrucci ran four races but said he’s no longer in the running for a ride with Rahal; Oliver Askew drove the final three events of the year and his future is unclear.

Harvey, who is headed into his third full IndyCar season, snagged the Hy-Vee sponsorship.

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing is owned by three-time IndyCar Champion and former Indy 500 winner Bobby Rahal, former CBS Late Show host David Letterman and Mi-Jack co-owner Mike Lanigan.

“I can’t tell you how pleased I am to welcome Jack to our team,” Bobby Rahal said. “He and Graham will work well together and be a strong foundation for our driver lineup that will raise not only the level of each driver individually, but of the team as a result.

“I respect and appreciate his commitment and work ethic to racing on and off the track, which is so key, and I also respect the way he deals with people — friendly and respectful.”

IndyCar disappointed by delay of video game but aiming to launch at start of 2024

IndyCar video game 2024

An IndyCar executive said there is “absolutely” disappointment that its long-awaited video game recently was delayed beyond its target date, but the series remains optimistic about the new title.

“Well, I don’t know how quick it will be, but the whole situation is important to us,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said during a news conference Monday morning to announce IndyCar’s NTT title sponsorship. “Motorsport Games has spent a lot of money, a lot of effort to create an IndyCar title. What we’ve seen of that effort, which is not completely obvious, is very reassuring.

“I think it’s going to be outstanding. That’s our shared objective, that when it is released, it’s just widely accepted. A great credit both to IndyCar racing, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, something that our fans love.”

In June 2021, IndyCar announced a new partnership with Motorsport Games to create and distribute an IndyCar video game for the PC and Xbox and PlayStation consoles in 2023.

But during an earnings call last week, Motorsport Games said the IndyCar game had been delayed to 2024 to ensure high quality.

Somewhat compounding the delay is that IndyCar’s license for iRacing expired after the end of the 2022 season because of its exclusive agreement with Motorsport Games.

That’s resulted in significant changes for IndyCar on iRacing, which had provided a high-profile way for the series to stay visible during its 2020 shutdown from the pandemic. (Players still can race an unbranded car but don’t race on current IndyCar tracks, nor can they stream).

That’s helped ratchet up the attention on having a video game outlet for IndyCar.

“I wish we had an IndyCar title 10 years ago,” said Miles, who has been working with the organization since 2013. “We’ve been close, but we’ve had these I think speed bumps.”

IndyCar is hopeful the Motorsports Game edition will be ready at the start of 2024. Miles hinted that beta versions could be unveiled to reporters ahead of the time “to begin to show the progress in a narrow way to make sure we’ve got it right, to test the progress so that we’re ready when they’re ready.”

It’s been nearly 18 years since the release of the most recent IndyCar video game for console or PC.

“(We) better get it right,” Miles said. “It’s something we’re very close to and continue to think about what it is to make sure we get it over the line in due course.”