As we had reported earlier this week, Rubens Barrichello has signed on to drive KV Racing’s third entry in this year’s IZOD IndyCar Series championship.
After he was dropped from the Williams F1 team’s driver line-up just short of being able to complete an unprecedented twentieth consecutive season in the top flight, the Brazilian was quickly convinced to test one of KV Racing’s Chevrolet-powered cars at Sebring.
He later followed this up with a further test at Infineon Raceway, in which he lapped less than a second slower than the pace-setting Will Power in the Penske.
Team team also confirmed that Tony Kanaan would remain with the team for a second season.
The news is an enormous boost for the IndyCar Series, which has at times struggled to attract drivers from other championship categories outside the United States, and championship boss Randy Bernard described the news as “an exciting day for the IndyCar Series”.
“We’ve said all along that one of the most important factors that will make the series successful is having the best drivers in the world, and there’s not a person in the world who knows racing that wouldn’t tell you that Rubens Barrichello is one of the greatest,” he is quoted as saying.
“I think it’s been interesting to hear the response of the other drivers. It’s been: ‘This is great for us because it will show how good all of our drivers are’.
“That, to me, is important because the best in IndyCar are saying ‘Bring him on’. There will be millions of fans that will want to see what he can do.”
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