Carlin confirms two-car IndyCar team

Carlin in Indy Lights

Carlin has confirmed that it will join the Verizon IndyCar Series next year with a two-car line-up.

Carlin will field its former GP2 driver Max Chilton alongside Charlie Kimball, both of whom arrive from Chip Ganassi Racing, in Chevrolet-powered cars.

The British outfit has raced in North America since entering Indy Lights in 2015, winning IndyCar’s second-tier series with Ed Jones in 2016.

Carlin attempted to join IndyCar ahead of the 2017 season in a link-up with KVSH Racing, although the deal fell through when it failed to sign Mikhail Aleshin.

Team boss Trevor Carlin stated in September that the “right moment” was approaching for his team to join IndyCar.

He said Carlin’s IndyCar move marked the achievement of a “long-term ambition.”

“We’re delighted to finally be able to announce our entry into the IndyCar Series, the result of a long-term ambition of the team,” said Carlin.

“To be joined on that journey in our debut season with drivers we already have a race winning history with in Max and Charlie, is beyond what we could have expected.

“By no means do we underestimate the challenge and competition that lies ahead, but I have great faith in the young and passionate team that our team manager Colin (Hale) and I have put together.”

Chilton was a race winner in British Formula 3 and the then-GP2 Series with Carlin and followed up a stint in Formula 1 with Marussia with an Indy Lights season with Carlin in 2015.

He then graduated to IndyCar with Ganassi but exited the team at the end of 2017, alongside Kimball, as Ganassi opted to run a two-car team for next year.

Chilton said Carlin’s experience of racing in spec series will help it transition in IndyCar.

“Carlin being the first British team to enter the IndyCar Series in the modern era is a result of a lot of hard work and ambition,” Chilton said.

“IndyCar is exceptionally competitive, but the introduction of the new aero package will help level the playing field slightly.

“I know that finding the maximum in a spec series like this is where Carlin really excels.”

Kimball last raced for Carlin when it ran the Victory Engineering Team in the World Series by Renault back in 2007 and said he and Chilton would complement each other.

“It seems like everything fell into place at the right time to have this opportunity to work with Trevor and the whole Carlin team again,” said Kimball.

“I’ve already got two years of experience working with Max as a team-mate and I think our strengths and weaknesses will really complement each other as we begin this new adventure.

“IndyCar is not just gaining a new race team, which is, of course, exciting, but really gaining a capable and competitive group of people that make up this team.”

In other news, another Brit in Jack Harvey will enter six races with Michael Shank Racing in a technical partnership with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports.

Those races will be St Petersburg, Long Beach, the Indianapolis 500, Mid-Ohio, Portland, and Sonoma.

The season begins in St Petersburg on March 9-11.

IndyCar Series 2018 full-time teams and drivers so far

Team Drivers
AJ Foyt Racing Tony Kaanan
Matheus Leist
Andretti Autosport Marco Andretti
Ryan Hunter-Reay
Alexander Rossi
Zach Veach
Carlin Max Chilton
Charlie Kimball
Chip Ganassi Racing Scott Dixon
Ed Jones
Dale Coyne Racing Sebastien Bourdais
TBA
Ed Carpenter Racing Spencer Pigot
TBA
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Graham Rahal
Takuma Sato
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports James Hinchcliffe
Robert Wickens
Team Penske Josef Newgarden
Simon Pagenaud
Will Power

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