As can the HMD Motorsports Juggernaught Defeat Andretti Autosport this year?
By now, the Indy Lights Championship has wrapped up hosting it’s third round of the season at Mother Speedway. It’s first of three Double Header outings this year; the others being at Detroit’s Belle Isle and Laguna Seca. As perhaps Y’all caught them Trackside as part of IndyCar’s “guns & Roses” IndyCar GP “Undercard,” Eh?
Prior to this weekend’s action on Indianapolis’s Road Corse, the winners were split 1-1 between the two Big Dawgs’, i.e.; Andretti Autosport’s four car entity vs. HMD’s five car Armada. Whilst “We” shouldn’t take Anything Away from the other Lights Competizione…
Global Racing Group with HMD Motorsports (1)
#24 Benjamin Peterson, USA
Had never heard of this racing Organization before last year’s Lights season, which is funny since the Global Racing Group’s based in Samammish,Washington, on the East side of Seattle. Having apparently spent the past several years competing in the unknown U.S. F4 and F3 Americas Championships, with the latter having been rebranded Formula Regional Americas Championship in 2020. Having won the Championship twice (to Date) between 2019-2020 with drivers Dakota Dickerson and Linus Lundqvist respectively.
Benjamin Peterson is a Danish American racing driver currently living in Seattle and holds Dual Citizenship. He’s contested Single Seater racing around the Globe, including a best season finish of fourth in the U.S. formula 4 Championship in 2017.
Peterson also finished Runner-up behind Dakota Dickerson in the 2019 FR Americas Championship, and finished fourth Overall in last year’s Lights Championship.
Prior to the Indianapolis Lights rounds, He’d scored two second place finishes, including a wild All Skate’ on Shreaded rain tyres with HDM Motorsports teammate Linus Lunqvist at Barber Motorsports Park! And surely is close to finally standing on the Top step of a Lights podium soon.
HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing (4)
#7 Christian Vogle, USA
#26 Linus Lundqvist, Sweden
#59 (R) Manuel Sulaiman, Mexico
#68 Danial Frost, Singapore
This season, HMD Motorsports in conjunction with Dale Coyne Racing, where David Malukas has joined their IndyCar team, Bulks up to four cars, albeit really a five car operation, including Peterson’s GRG/HMD effort.
Christian Vogle moves over from the departed Carlin effort, having finished 11th Overall last year. While Danial Frost moves over from Andretti Autosport where He finished 5th Overall last season, one place Ahead of former Lights teammate and now Rookie IndyCar Driver Devlin DeFrancesco.
Mexico’s Manuel Sulaiman previously won the NACAM Formula 4 Championship consecutively between 2018-2019 before joining Juncos Racing’s Indy Pro 2000 effort, where He won at Road America, before jumping up to Indy Lights with HMD Motorsports in 2021 at Portland for a partial season. As Manuel tackles his first full season Lights campaign with the HMD/DCR Boyz’ Alphabet Soup Brigade, Hya!
Sweden’s Linus Lundqvist is a multi-times Championship winning driver, including winning the 2018 BRDC British F3 title and the 2020 FR Americas Crown, where He thoroughly Dominated the season. Crushing Runner-up David Malukas with 15 total wins, including eight in-a-row at Seasons beginning!
As his reward was that year the FR Americas began giving the Champion a fully funded Indy Lights Scholarship, which Lundqvist put to good effect with the Global/HMD Partnership. As Lundqvist won at Alabama and Road America enroute to finishing third Overall in the championship.
As mentioned, Lundqvist won a very entertaining All Skate’ at Barber Motorsports Park this May, barely Holding off teammate Peterson for his third Lights win to date. As these two drivers seem to be early favourites for the Championship this year.
TJ Speed Motorsports (2)
#12 (R) James Roe Jr, Republic of Ireland
#21 (R) Kyffin Simpson, Barbados
(R = Rookie Driver)
This team was born out of the former Belardi Auto Racing Lights team, which team owner Tim Neff purchased late 2020. As Neff said it was too late for a “proper” Lights campaign last year, so they focused upon the FR Americas Championship instead, which they won first time out!
As Aussie’ Neff is an interesting character, being a former triple World Jet Ski champion who competed against the likes of Beth Boles, Conor Daly’s Mum’. Not to mention being a veteran Open Wheel Racing Engineer whos worked both in Lights and IndyCar, and won Lights Championships with the former Powerhouse Sam Schmidt Motorsports effort.
Irishman James Roe Jr. came Across thoust Bloody Puddle and finished fifth Overall in the 2019 FR Americas Championship behind Global Racing Group teammates Dakota Dickerson and Benjamin Peterson who finished 1-2 that year. Roe graduated to the Indy Pro 2000 championship and claimed his first W’ at the 2021 Season Finale at Mid Ohio before moving to Lights this year.
Kyffin Simson who Hails from the Cayman Islands is a 17yr Old Teenager, who’s only in his third year of racing Single Seaters. Making his debut in 2018 in U.S. formula 4 after nine years of Karting in the Caribbean, and already has a Championship title to his credit. As Simpson won seven races in last year’s FR Americas Championship and graduates to Indy Lights courtesy of his title winning Honda Scholarship.
As Kyffin also was Guest of the Haas F1 Team at the just concluded Miami Grand Prix, which you can read about below…
And now on the Heels of scribblin’ this No Fenders story comes word that Chip Ganassi Racing has just signed Simpson to a multi-year Driver Development Deal, which will allow him access to it’s IndyCar Drivers along with being part of Driver Debriefs, etc.