Jüri Vips gets IndyCar starts for last two races of 2023

Jüri Vips.
Jüri Vips. Source: SCANPIX / IMAGO/PanoramiC

Estonian racing driver is taking part in the last two stages of this year's North American IndyCar series series, with the Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing team.

The remaining races are to be held at the Grand Prix of Portland, starting this Saturday, and then the Grand Prix of Laguna Seca near Monterey, California, starting September 10.

Vips had tested for the team earlier this year, after another driver's injury provided an opportunity to do so.

Vips, 23, thanked team owners Bobby Rahal and Mike Lanigan for giving them the opportunity to race for them. "I haven't competed all year, so the anticipation over this opportunity is very high, and I just hope to start again," he said.

"I get along with everyone on the team, and I really like the atmosphere in the team too. Bobby [Rahal] is one of those guys who give second chances, and I'm extremely grateful that he has given on to me me. I hope to give back to him, Mike and the rest of the team a strong result," he went on.

Talk show host David Letterman is the other team owner.

Vips aimed high in his goals for the two races, saying: "I feel I'm ready for these races. I think these tracks suit a certain experience and driving style, as well as the car itself," adding that he had had some good experience on the team's simulator.

Team owner and former star driver Bobby Rahal also expressed satisfaction with the addition of the Estonian to the team. "He was a clear leader in the Red Bull Junior F2 team a few years ago and demonstrated major talent, which we saw in the two test drives, so we look forward to what he is capable of at the race weekend," Rahal said.

Following his run in the F2 series, Vips tested the Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda-powered car for the first time last October at the Sebring circuit, and then again this March at the Barber Motorsports Park circuit in Birmingham, Alabama

Graham Rahal (U.S.) and Christian Lundgaard (Denmark), the other and old sparring partner of the Estonian from F2 days, make up the team, while British driver Katherine Legge has raced once this season also for Rahal Letterman Lanigan.

Briton Callum Ilott (Juncos Hollinger) and New Zealander Marcus Armstrong (Chip Ganassi) are other ex-F2 drivers currently racing in the IndyCar series.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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