Series opener set for March 30
By: Autoweek Staff on March 26, 2014
LAT PHOTOGRAPHIC – Could Carlos Munoz win his 1st IndyCar race this weekend in St. Petersburg? He is on of 6 drivers who are hunting for their 1st series win.
James Hinchcliffe was the surprising initial-time winner in last year’s season-opening IndyCar Series race.
But as the new season is about to begin, the search is on for the driver prepared to break by means of and win for the initial time in the series.
In actuality, he possibly doesn’t exist. Not this yr, anyway.
4teen of the 22 drivers anticipated in Sunday’s Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg have won at least one race considering that U.S. open-wheel racing unified in 2008.
There are 2 far more in this area (Juan Pablo Montoya and Sébastien Bourdais) won races prior to unification. Oriol Servià would be a third, but his element-time routine with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing doesn’t consist of this race.
That leaves 6 drivers to grow to be 1st-time winners: Carlos Muñoz, Sebastián Saavedra, Jack Hawksworth, Josef Newgarden, Mikhail Aleshin and Carlos Huertas, assuming the latter is the choice of Dale Coyne Racing, as anticipated.
Of people, Muñoz has the very best likelihood to win a race this season. Driving for Andretti Autosport in final year’s Indianapolis 500, the Colombian finished 2nd to Tony Kanaan. Munoz will drive total-time this season for Michael Andretti’s staff alongside Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Hinchcliffe.
Newgarden completed 2nd in final year’s street race in Baltimore, and he returns to Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing for a third season. He has 4 occupation prime-5 finishes.
Saavedra is paired with Bourdais for the second straight season, but they’ve moved from Dragon Racing to KV Racing Technology, which won the 500 final 12 months with Kanaan. His only 2 best-10 finishes in 38 series races came last yr with Jay Penske’s staff, an eighth in Baltimore his ideal.
Hawksworth (Bryan Herta Autosport), Aleshin (Schmidt Peterson Motorsports) and Huertas (Dale Coyne Racing) will be producing their series debuts this weekend.
Practice begins Friday.
Apart from Hinchcliffe, Takuma Sato, Charlie Kimball and Simon Pagenaud grew to become very first-time series winners last season. Hinchcliffe won 3 instances, Pagenaud twice.
Here are the drivers in this area who have won IndyCar Series races:
Scott Dixon: 33
Sébastien Bourdais: 31
Hélio Castroneves: 28
Will Energy: 21
Tony Kanaan: 16
Juan Pablo Montoya: 11
Ryan Hunter-Reay: 11
Ryan Briscoe: 7
Justin Wilson: 6
James Hinchcliffe: 3
Marco Andretti: 2
Mike Conway: 2
Simon Pagenaud: 2
Graham Rahal: one
Takuma Sato: one
Charlie Kimball: 1
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