Photo- Felix Rosenqvist on his way to his first win at road America. Joe Skibinski, Indycar
Arrow McLaren SP continues to dominate the 2021 driver lineup. Their third announcement this week blew the lid off the simmering kettle of Indycar Silly season. Felix Rosenqvist wil move from Chip Ganassi Racing to the second year team to drive the number 7 car vacated two days ago by Oliver Askew. Askew will drive for the team in the season finale at St. Pete if he is medically cleared to drive. Rosenqvist will complete his contract with Ganassi at that time as well.
Chip Ganassi Racing has an agreement with 7 time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson to run the road course portion of the 2021 schedule. Before the Rosenqvist announcement, ti was assumed that Johnson would be in a fourth Ganassi car. Does he now move to the 10? If so, who drives the car at the four oval races next year?
Helio Castroneves was thought to be a strong candidate for a third car at AMSP. Is that still an option? Will Castroneves now go to Ganassi? I can’t see him being willing to run an oval only program. Tony Kanaan is a possibility for the oval portion of the Johnson ride.
Both AMSP and Ganassi looked as if they would each expand by one car for 2021. That possibility is now in question. Two more cars on the grid would leave more room for drivers looking for work.
Meanwhile, team Penske is expected to run four cars next year with the addition of Scott McLaughlin, who will make his debut at St. Pete.
Andretti Autosport, which ran five cars this season, has only Alexander Rossi and Colton Herta locked in for 2021. Will veteran Ryan Hunter-Reay retire or became an Indy only driver?
Other drivers with uncertain status for next year are Conor Daly, Rinus Veekay, James Hinchcliffe, Charlie Kimball, and Dalton Kellett.
The 2021 lineup, which just a couple of weeks ago appeared to have some minor tweaks plus the possibility of a larger grid, now looks like there may be some major shuffling.