Juncos Racing will soon be confirming a returnee and a rookie to its Pro Mazda squad, but has no commitments for its star ride in Indy Lights
Ricardo Juncos, whose team took Spencer Pigot to Indy Lights glory this year, has admitted to Motorsport.com he still has “completely open” seat in the series, as well as two in his Pro Mazda lineup.
Despite conquering the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires field at its first attempt in the series, with Pigot scoring six wins on his way to the championship, Juncos Racing has yet to fill the second berth alongside Kyle Kaiser who was confirmed last week.
Said Juncos: “It’s not so much a surprise to me, because Indy Lights is expensive and yes, a driver has to bring money. That is the way things are.
“We have talked with drivers, but it’s the same as always – they are struggling for sponsors. And I have not called drivers; that’s not how I do things. Those who think they have a budget, if they’re interested, will call me.”
Asked if he had his eye on any of the Pro Mazda drivers that might be ready to graduate, Juncos replied: “Well I don’t think any of our [four] guys is ready to move up yet, no. Santiago Urrutia [who won the series driving for Team Pelfrey] is obviously good, as we saw already from some of his racing in Europe. Neil Alberico [who took second for Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing] is strong also, but again, no money.”
Weiron Tan, the fast albeit wild Malaysian who took four wins for Andretti Autosport in Pro Mazda last year, is also on Juncos’ ideal shortlist. “Yes he would possibly be top of the list of drivers,” said the Argentine team owner. “He’s fast – we know that, we wouldn’t even have to test him – and he seems a nice guy, too, which is also important.”
Two set so far in Pro Mazda
Ricardo Juncos was able to confirm with Motorsport.com that Will Owen will return for a second season of Pro Mazda with the Indianapolis-based squad. The American finished seventh last season with three podium finishes, and heads down to New Zealand this winter to gain more experience in the Toyota Racing Series.
The second Juncos Pro Mazda driver will be Argentina’s Nicolas Dapero, who is on the Juncos Driver Development program. This year he has been racing in the Brazilian Formula 3 championship, and despite missing the first four races, Dapero lies sixth in the championship having scored five podium finishes.
Said Juncos: "We will keep on testing and testing for now, and I hope by the end of November we will have answers for all our cars."
Juncos Racing’s heritage in Pro Mazda is strong, highlights being guiding Conor Daly (2010) and Pigot (2014) to the championship.