Chip Ganassi Racing has announced that it has obtained the driving services of Takuma Sato for the upcoming season, bringing him on to drive the season’s oval rounds for the team’s fourth car.
The 45-year-old Japanese driver will be paired with rookie Marcus Armstrong in the #11 entry, and will contest a partial season for the first time since joining IndyCar 13 years ago.
Rumors had been swirling that his contract with Dale Coyne Racing was not going to be renewed, despite his considerable number of personal sponsors that bring added financial support.
Sato was repeatedly praised for his sharing of knowledge with his young team-mate David Malukas throughout the 2022 season, and he will likely be equally valuable to his new rookie pairing at Ganassi.
“First of all, I would like to thank Chip [Ganassi] and Mike [Hull, Managing Director for CGR] for helping put this all together,” said Sato.
“I am extremely excited to join Chip Ganassi Racing for the 2023 season. The organization has been at the top of our sport for decades and needless to say, extremely competitive.
“Focusing on the oval races is a new chapter for me but I’m thrilled to have the ability to race with team members and teammates that have won the championships and Indianapolis 500 in the past, which is a tremendous advantage. I just can’t wait to get started.”
Sato has been racing in the NTT IndyCar Series since 2010, moving over to the series following a seven-year career in Formula 1.
He has raced for many different teams in his time stateside, and has achieved the rare feat of winning the Indianapolis 500 on two separate occasions.
His most recent Indy 500 victory in 2020 is actually his most recent win overall, a stat that he would like to update this upcoming season.
There are five oval rounds in this year’s upcoming IndyCar season, giving the veteran a small number of opportunities to add to his total of six wins.