Takuma Sato will drive a Lotus-branded IndyCar in certain rounds of this year’s IndyCar championship.
The car will be run by KV Racing and is set for its first outing at St Petersburg in Florida in two weeks’ time. The series holds its first round at a new street circuit in Sao Paolo tomorrow.
According to Lotus the car will be entered as a “Lotus-Cosworth”. At present Honda are the exclusive supplier of engines to the IndyCar championship. Every one of Sato’s 90 starts came at the wheel of a Honda-powered car.
Sato was in the running for an F1 return with Lotus this year but the seats went to Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen instead. Sato said:
This is fantastic news for everyone. It is exiting for me to be a Lotus driver and I’m really looking forward to great success with this new project.
Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar said:
Racing has always defined Lotus and on many occasions in motorsports history Lotus’ numerous innovations have re-defined racing. It’s only fitting that as the Lotus Racing name re-enters Formula 1, we will also race and innovate again in IndyCar. The Lotus name will, once again compete in the top two open-wheel racing series for the passion and enthusiasm of car fans around the globe.
Jim Clark won the Indianapolis 500 for Lotus in 1965.