INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Peter Dempsey’s run with Belardi Auto Racing will come to a premature close following the news that the team will lack sufficient sponsorship to field the Freedom 100 winner’s campaign at the last two races.

Dempsey and Belardi Auto Racing proudly claimed their first victories together in an unforgettable win at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May, and Dempsey’s intent to complete his first full season with the team in the Firestone Indy Lights series looked promising.

Peter Dempsey, Belardi Auto Racing takes the win
Peter Dempsey, Belardi Auto Racing takes the win

Photo by: Jay Alley

With just two races to go, the Irish racer lies fifth in the championship and is mathematically still in contention for the title. Despite the possibility, the team felt the odds of becoming the 2013 champions were slim, and the shortage of proper funding weighed in heavier in the decision of whether or not to finish out the season.

“It’s been a pleasure to have Peter with us this season,” said Team Owner Brian Belardi. “He has been a great asset to our team this year on and off the track. I saw a lot of potential in him last year in the races that he ran with us, and I knew with his determination he would find success on the podium with our team, just as he did at the Freedom 100 this year.

That incredible finish marked history at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and I couldn’t be happier to say he and Belardi Auto Racing both got their first Indy Lights victories there. I enjoyed having him with us this year and I wish him all the best of luck in the rest of his career.”

“It’s very disappointing to not be in a position to finish out the championship with Belardi Auto Racing,” said Dempsey. “However, I do fully understand the unfortunate reasons for their decision.

Motorsport is an expensive sport and things like this happen all the time. I’ve really enjoyed the last year with the team. Brian [Belardi] gave me the biggest opportunity anyone has ever given me, and that’s something I will never forget.

Peter Dempsey, Belardi Auto Racing celebrates the win
Peter Dempsey, Belardi Auto Racing celebrates the win

Photo by: Jay Alley

“During our time together, we had a lot of success, winning the Freedom 100 and achieving multiple podiums. I worked as hard as I could for the team and brought them the best season they’ve had in the series, and I’m very proud to be a part of that.

I now feel that I am more prepared than ever for IndyCar, and I would never have gotten to this point without Belardi Auto Racing. I wish Brian and the team all the best, and I hope they can have more success in the near future.”

Dempsey remains focused on advancing to the IZOD IndyCar Series in 2014 and is working hard to raise the necessary sponsorship to earn his seat.

Peter Dempsey