The newly launched Ed Carpenter Racing team has hit the ground running, signing open-wheel veteran manager Derrick Walker to oversee the operation, allowing Carpenter to focus on his driving duties when the team debuts in the 2012 IndyCar season.
Walker, with 40 years of motorsport experience from his beginnings in Formula 1 with the Brabham team, has been a mainstay in the American racing landscape since the 1980’s, during which time he has overseen a number of teams with mixed levels of success.
With the signing of Walker is good new for Carpenter, who will not only benefit from the experience brought by Walker, but from the knowledge and facilities available to the new team at their factory in Indianapolis.
Walker’s most recent top flight open-wheel foray was with Team Australia in the now-defunct ChampCar series, – where the outfit was best known for introducing current Team Penske driver and regular frontrunner Will Power to the American open-wheel motor racing landscape (pictured).
“We started with Derrick and we didn’t want to go down any other avenues. There’s a lot here to work with and he’s got a lot of equipment so I feel like we’re ahead of the game,” Carpenter told SPEED.
Walker himself has been absent from the IndyCar pit wall since 2008 and has been surprised at the level of interest in his management services as of late.
“I’ve been trying to figure out a way to keep the doors open and get back into what I like most, Indy cars, and this is a great opportunity,” he said.
Currently, Walker Racing competes in the American Le Mans Series, taking their first victory this past season at Mid-Ohio.
[Images via LAT; article by Matt Lennon]