A busy IndyCar offseason continued this week as Honda teams tested their new 2018 aero kits at Phoenix. Meanwhile Chip Ganassi poured cold water on Danica Patrick at Ganassi and there were musical chairs at Andretti Autosport.
MotorSportNotes rounds up this week’s IndyCar news.
Chip Ganassi confirms Danica negotiations have ‘stalled’
Speaking at the Performance Racing Industry trade show in Indianapolis, Chip Ganassi confirmed negotiations for Danica Patrick to run with his eponymous team at both the Daytona and Indianapolis 500 races in 2018 had ‘stalled’.
Chip Ganassi Racing was considered the primary candidate to run the former NASCAR driver in her swan song season. However Ganassi remarked that the deal was “probably not going to happen”. Roger Penske has already ruled his team out of running the one-time IndyCar race winner.
Rossi and Andretti trade places at Andretti Autosport
Andretti Autosport confirmed this week that Alexander Rossi and Marco Andretti will switch places in the team in 2018.
Marco will switch to the Andretti Herta number 98 entry, with Rossi taking over Andretti’s number 27 car.
Rossi will retain his NAPA sponsorship despite the changes.
Hinchcliffe puzzled by Phoenix testing crash
Schmidt Peterson driver James Hinchcliffe was puzzled by a late session crash that brought his Honda test session at Phoenix Raceway to a premature end.
Running alongside Ganassi star Scott Dixon the Canadian declared the test to be positive but was unable to explain his crash.
Mears: Castroneves can still win the Indy 500 as a part-time driver
IndyCar legend Rick Mears – in an interview with David Malsher – said he believed 3-time Indy 500 champion Helio Castroneves can take a 4th win, despite dropping down to a single entry in 2018.