Following speculation concerning the number of cars Andretti Global plans to field for the 2024 IndyCar season, the team has confirmed that it will indeed be shrinking from four full time entries down to three.
The confirmation, first reported by The Race, means that the team’s announced lineup is complete with Colton Herta, Kyle Kirkwood, and Marcus Ericsson filling the seats of the #26, #27, and #28 respectively.
The team’s fourth entry has traditionally been the car that Andretti reserves for paying drivers who bring their own funding to the table.
Devlin DeFrancesco filled that role for the past two seasons, but that option is no longer available to him if he intends to continue his career in the series.
“There will be just the three [entries next year],” said Andretti COO Rob Edwards, speaking to RACER. “We’re definitely trying to focus our efforts and with a view to more race wins and championships and Indy 500s.
“We look at what Penske did when they went from four to three, and in their case, they had four strong drivers, not ride buyers, but they still felt operationally that it was an advantage for them to do three and we see some similar advantages.
“And so we’re going to tread down that path and focus on Colton, Kyle, and Marcus.”
Andretti has fielded four or more full time entries in IndyCar virtually every year since 2004, with 2012 and 2015 being the only two exceptions.
It is unknown at this time if the slimmer program will continue for more than one season, and will largely depend on the team’s performance in the upcoming year.
There will still likely be four Andretti cars in the Indianapolis 500, however, with the tradition of an extra entry for the famous race set to continue.
“The plan is certainly to be four at the 500,” Edwards confirmed. “There’s no anticipated plan to run more than that.
“Obviously, the 500 is super important and so that same drive to focus on the three cars for season would lead us to only add the one car for the 500.”