FORMER SAM SCHMIDT MOTORSPORTS DRIVER ALEX LLOYD TO DRIVE IN INDYCAR SEASON FINALE INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Alex Lloyd, a former driver of Sam Schmidt Motorsports, was announced today as the driver of the second entry for Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing...
FORMER SAM SCHMIDT MOTORSPORTS DRIVER ALEX LLOYD TO DRIVE IN INDYCAR SEASON FINALE
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Alex Lloyd, a former driver of Sam Schmidt Motorsports, was announced today as the driver of the second entry for Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing in the IndyCar Series season finale at the Homestead-Miami Speedway on October 10th.
Besides being exciting news for Lloyd, the news was equally exciting for Sam Schmidt, who ran Lloyd's Firestone Indy Lights effort in 2007.
Schmidt said, "I'm not his father, but I feel the same level of pride ."
Lloyd has been the most successful driver for Sam Schmidt Motorsports, winning eight of 15 races in 2007, including the Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He also started from pole five times en route to a dominating, record-setting championship. The season he had led to his signing with Target Chip Ganassi Racing in the fall of that year.
With that team, he ran selected Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series races and the 2008 Indianapolis 500.
The resources of Sam Schmidt Motorsports and Ganassi combined this past May to run Lloyd in the 93rd Indianapolis 500. One of the team's highlights was stealing the 11th and final spot on the first day of qualifying for the famed race and being the highest placed part-time entry in the starting field.
"It was a fantastic month of May for the team," Schmidt said. "We really enjoyed working with Alex again."
Shortly after the month, Lloyd decided to leave the Ganassi Racing organization to pursue other opportunities within the IndyCar Series.
"We worked extremely hard to get Alex signed by Ganassi in 2007, and I think none of us have any regrets," Schmidt said. "He was simply not at the right place at the right time over the past two season, and that happens. When he decided to 'roll the dice' and put himself on the job market in July, we respected the decision and did everything within our power to assist with the process."
Lloyd has spent the last few months training diligently and working with sponsors to try and put together a program that would see him race on a more permanent basis. The efforts were rewarded today with the announcement that he would drive for Newman/Haas/Lanigan in the final race of this year.
"There have been several teams interested in doing a program with Alex," Schmidt said. "Frankly, he couldn't have signed with a more competitive and professional organization. We look forward to the fantastic results we know he is capable of achieving."