Vautier gets surprise call-up for Coyne in Texas

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Vautier gets surprise call-up for Coyne in Texas
David Malsher
By: David Malsher
Jun 7, 2017, 1:14 PM

Tristan Vautier has signed with Dale Coyne Racing to sub for Sebastien Bourdais in this weekend’s IndyCar race in Texas.

Tristan Vautier, Dale Coyne Racing Honda
Tristan Vautier, Dale Coyne Racing Honda
Tristan Vautier, Dale Coyne Racing Honda
Tristan Vautier, Dale Coyne Racing Honda
Tristan Vautier, Dale Coyne Racing Honda

Although team owner Dale Coyne last week told Motorsport.com that Oriol Servia and James Davison were strongest possibilities for the #18 car should Esteban Gutierrez be unable to take his rookie oval test in time for Texas Motor Speedway, it’s the 2011 Pro Mazda champion and 2012 Indy Lights champion who has been given the nod.

Coyne is intending to run former F1 driver Gutierrez for the remainder of the season after Texas, and it’s understood that Servia – who raced a second Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing-Honda at Indy and Detroit – is looking for a ride that offers multiple races, rather than just Texas.

"We chose Tristan to fill the 18 seat at Texas because of his previous experience at Texas Motor Speedway," said Coyne.

"We think he can help the team and Ed (Jones) who has never raced or even tested there.

"Tristan has remained close with the team and he's always done a good job for us. I expect much of the same going into this race weekend."

Vautier has strong form as a sub at Coyne’s team, having replaced Carlos Huertas in the #18 car for the Indy 500 in 2015, before taking over from Francesco Dracone in the #19 car for the balance of the season. He scored fourth at Detroit and sixth at Mid-Ohio.

Since then, the Frenchman has turned his hand to sportscars, racing a Mercedes AMG GT3 in Europe alongside Felix Rosenqvist and in IMSA’s GTD class alongside Kenny Habul, in the latter’s SunEnergy1 team. 

"I'm really looking forward to getting back in an Indy car and race for Dale again," said Vautier. "But before talking about me stepping in, let's all keep sending our thoughts to Seb for a quick recovery.

"I was happy to see him at the track at Indy on race day. I have big shoes to fill!"

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About this article

Series IndyCar
Event Texas
Location Texas Motor Speedway
Drivers Tristan Vautier
Teams Dale Coyne Racing
Author David Malsher
Article type Breaking news