Rising star Conor Daly will be making two returns next month; he’ll be back with Schmidt-Peterson Motorsports for the first time in four years and back in the Indianapolis 500 after a one year hiatus.
Daly will drive the Honda powered #43 entry alongside regulars James Hinchcliffe and James Jakes for the 500-mile race.
“I’m ecstatic to partner with Schmidt-Peterson Motorsports for the 99th running of the Indianapolis 500,” Daly said. “I have had a great relationship with Sam Schmidt since driving for him in Indy Lights and I’ve always wanted a shot in his Verizon IndyCar Series team. It’s an honour to make my second attempt at the Indy 500.”
Despite a huge accident in practice – where he flipped his car – Daly finished 22nd in his debut Indy 500 start in 2013 driving AJ Foyt’s second entry.
He drove a few races in Indy Lights with Schmidt in the 2011 season, picking up a victory at Long Beach as well as competing in his first season of GP3 in Europe.
“Conor raced for our team in Indy Lights in 2011 for part of the season before heading to Europe, so we know what he is capable of. He deserves to be competing in the Verizon IndyCar Series full time and we’re honoured to be providing this opportunity,” team co-owner Sam Schmidt said.
Daly, son of former F1 and Champ Car driver Derek Daly has 48 appearances in GP3 from 2011-13, racing for Carlin Motorsport, Lotus GP and ART Grand Prix (for whom he finished third in the Drivers’ Championship 2013) respectively, as well as two appearances in 2013 with Hilmer Motorsport in the GP2 Series and 18 appearances with Venezuela GP Lazarus in the 2014 GP2 season.
Daly has been more active during the IndyCar Series season, driving Honda’s ‘Fastest seat in Sports’ two-seater at selected rounds sharing alongside legend Mario Andretti.
A last-minute call from Dayle Coyne for Daly came at the right place and time at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach when he was called up for a one-off drive with the team, replacing the injured Rocky Moran Jr. in the #18 entry.
Images via Motorsport.com
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