Ferrari confirms IndyCar evaluation project

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has admitted that the legendary Italian sportscar manufacturer and F1 team is currently investigating the possibility of entering the NTT IndyCar Series, possibly as soon as 2022.

Ferrari confirms IndyCar evaluation project

Mere days after racing icon Mario Andretti called on the Scuderia to consider entry into U.S. open-wheel racing, Binotto admitted that both IndyCar and world championship-level sportscar racing are under discussion at the team’s Maranello base.

During an interview with SkySport Italia, the Ferrari team principal confirmed that the goal is to find championships that match the needs of the Prancing Horse when part of the sports management staff are otherwise destined to become redundant due to the Formula 1’s forthcoming budget cap.

“Ferrari feels a lot of social responsibility towards its employees,” explained Binotto, “and we want to be sure that for each of them there will be a workspace in the future.

“For this reason we have started to evaluate alternative programs, and I confirm that we are looking at IndyCar, which is currently a very different category from ours [F1] but with a change of regulation scheduled in 2022 [introduction of hybrid engines]. We also observe the world of endurance racing and other series. We will try to make the best choice.

“In recent weeks there has been a lot of discussion about the downsizing of the budget available for Formula 1 teams,” concluded Binotto, “and a conclusion has now been reached. The limit of $175 million that had been defined and voted [in 2019] will be lowered to $145m.

“At Ferrari we were structuring ourselves based on the budget approved last year, and the further reduction represents an important challenge that will inevitably lead to review staff, structure and organization.”

Read Also:

While there has been no hint from IndyCar that it is preparing to throw open the doors to an alternative chassis supplier beyond Dallara, which has been sole supplier since 2009, the new engine and chassis regulations could make this a possibility. However, several team owners – who have enjoyed the low-cost/high-quality racing of the spec chassis era would need to be convinced that this is the correct way forward.

That said, were Ferrari to agree to offer IndyCar’s panacea – a third engine supply, for up to one-third of the field – IndyCar, now under the control of Roger Penske, may well agree to chassis diversity.

Some 35 years after the stillborn Ferrari 637 IndyCar project, which was created during an ongoing dispute between Enzo Ferrari and the FIA, the chances of the Prancing Horse competing in U.S. open-wheel races appears to have taken a significant leap forward.

shares
comments
Rescheduled St. Pete race becomes IndyCar finale

Previous article

Rescheduled St. Pete race becomes IndyCar finale

Next article

IndyCar could lose Toronto race to new anti-coronavirus regs

IndyCar could lose Toronto race to new anti-coronavirus regs
Load comments
Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar Prime

Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar

One of motorsport’s worst-kept secrets now out in the open, and Romain Grosjean has been confirmed as an Andretti Autosport IndyCar driver in 2022. It marks a remarkable turnaround after the abrupt end to his Formula 1 career, and is a firm indication of his commitment to challenge for the IndyCar Series title  

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch Prime

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch

The 2021 IndyCar silly season is one of the silliest of all, but it’s satisfying to see so many talented drivers in play – including Callum Ilott. David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Sep 11, 2021
IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet Prime

IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet

The ace 20-somethings in IndyCar have risen to become title contenders, but the best of the series veterans are digging deep and responding – and will continue to do so over the next couple of years, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Aug 20, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie Prime

The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie

Jeff Krosnoff was plucked out of obscurity to become a respected and highly popular professional in Japan, and then got his big break in CART Indy car for 1996. But a tragic accident at Toronto 25 years ago cut short a promising career and curtailed his regular teammate Mauro Martini's passion for racing.

IndyCar
Jul 14, 2021
The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review Prime

The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review

At the halfway point in the 2021 NTT IndyCar Series season, we've had seven winners in eight races, spread between five teams – none of them Team Penske. In this unusual season, even by IndyCar standards, who’s excelling and who’s dragging their heels? David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Jun 18, 2021
The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history Prime

Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history

Helio Castroneves’ overwhelming vivaciousness outside the cockpit belies a hardcore racer who knows how to plot his moves – and then recall it all for us. A day after his fourth Indy 500 win, Helio explained his tactics to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Jun 2, 2021