Spencer Pigot, winner of the 2015 Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires Championship, has secured the funding necessary to run the remaining Verizon IndyCar Series road and street course events in the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevrolet/Dallara for Ed Carpenter Racing beginning with this weekend’s “Chevrolet Dual in Detroit” double-header.
[singlepic id=1126 w=300 float=right]”I’m very excited to be joining Ed Carpenter Racing for the remainder of the season on road and street courses. ECR has been very strong in 2016 and I hope we can continue to build on the success they’ve already had. I have to thank Fuzzy’s Vodka and Rising Star Racing for the opportunity to continue my IndyCar career this season. This weekend in Detroit will be the first time we work together, they have a lot of talented people within the team and we will try to hit the ground running. I’d also like to thank Bobby Rahal and the RLL team for giving me my first shot in IndyCar.” — Spencer Pigot, No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing
Winning the 2015 Indy Lights championship afforded Pigot the opportunity to race in the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing thanks to the scholarship program from Mazda, but it was a one-off deal specifically for the St. Petersburg Grand Prix, the Indy Grand Prix, and the Indianapolis 500. This latest deal with Ed Carpenter Racing places him in a seat for the remainder of the season, at least on the non-oval venues. Given the reduction of ovals on the IndyCar schedule in recent seasons, this still provides the young IndyCar rookie with a substantial amount of needed seat-time.
It’s also notable that Ed Carpenter Racing has hired three Indy Lights champions to drive its cars this season. Full-time driver of the No. 21 car, Josef Newgarden, won the feeder series championship in 2011, and the 2009 champion, JR Hildebrand, ran the No. 6 machine for this year’s Indianapolis 500. It’s good to see the Mazda Road to Indy program working so well at preparing and graduating drivers into the IndyCar series. It’s a feat that not all junior programs can claim for their respective top-tier series.
Pigot begins work with the team immediately as the team makes the short drive up to Detroit’s Belle Isle for this weekend’s races. Friday practice begins 1045 EDT, and you can follow his progress at racecontrol.indycar.com.