Santino Ferrucci will return to the NTT IndyCar Series at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. After two full seasons with Dale Coyne Racing, Ferrucci will drive a third entry for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500. The Connecticut native will pilot the No. 45 Honda alongside teammates Graham Rahal and two-time and defending Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato.
Ferrucci has been quite impressive on the ovals during his time in IndyCar, and IMS in particular. In his first Indy 500 race, he started 23rd and finished 7th. He did even better last year when he started 19th and finished 4th. The RLL Racing team has a formidable lineup. Their three drivers finished 1st, 3rd, and 4th in last year’s Greatest Spectacle in Racing. The full press release from today is below.
[Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Press Release]
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) announced today that Hy-Vee, Inc. – an employee-owned supermarket chain that operates more than 275 retail stores across eight Midwestern states – will be the primary sponsor of Graham Rahal’s NTT INDYCAR SERIES entry at Road America (June 20) and World Wide Technology Raceway (August 21) as well as the primary sponsor of the No. 45 entry for Santino Ferrucci for the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500 (May 30). In addition, Hy-Vee will be a full-season associate sponsor on Rahal’s car.
Hy-Vee first joined the team as the primary sponsor of Graham Rahal’s entry for Race 2 at the Iowa Speedway in 2020 where he finished third. The company was also the primary sponsor of the team’s entry for Spencer Pigot at the Indy 500 and an associate sponsor of Rahal’s entry for the legendary race.
After two full INDYCAR SERIES seasons in 2019-2020 and a partial one in 2018, Ferrucci will join RLL for the Indy 500, where he has been a contender for victory. He was named Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year in 2019 after a seventh-place finish, and he finished fourth to race winner Takuma Sato and third place finisher Graham Rahal in 2020. To date, his best Indy car start is second place at Mid-Ohio (Race 2) in 2020 – he has finished in fourth place four times. In 2021, Ferrucci competes part-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving for Sam Hunt Racing. He will join Rahal and Sato at an open test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, April 8-9.
“I am excited to be competing in the Indianapolis 500 with Hy-Vee and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing,” said Ferrucci. “It’s a great opportunity and I cannot thank the team, owners and partners enough for believing in me. I’m super excited to start spending some time at the shop in Indianapolis and preparing for an incredible run this May.”
“It is great to have Hy-Vee as a partner of our program again,” said team co-owner Bobby Rahal. “My family and I live in the Midwest and it’s exciting to see Hy-Vee continue to grow. The sense of pride their employees have in their company and what Hy-Vee does to support their local communities is inspiring and something that we work to emulate every day within our team. We look forward to creating special moments for Hy-Vee customers and employees this season while promoting the Hy-Vee brand on a national stage.”
Ferrucci began his karting career at age five and was a multi-time champion by age 11 and was featured in an article in GQ magazine on being a karting prodigy. He also competed in six Formula 2000 races, never finishing worse than fourth in any race. In 2013 he competed in the Skip Barber Racing Series, winning his debut race at Homestead and collecting five wins, two poles and three fastest laps. His career took him to England in 2014 where he competed in British Formula 3, winning two races – both at Brands Hatch, which made him the youngest winner in British Formula 3 history at 16 years, 2 months and 30 days.
Ferrucci made his debut in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES for Dale Coyne Racing in 2018 with a best finish of 11th at the season-finale at Sonoma and competed in a total of four events (Detroit doubleheader, Portland). In 2019, he competed in the full INDYCAR SERIES season and finished 13th in series standings for Dale Coyne Racing with a best finish of fourth at Texas, Pocono and World Wide Technology Raceway. He was named Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year after an impressive performance en route to a seventh-place finish.
Ferrucci returned for his second full season in the series in 2020 with Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan with a best finish of fourth place in the Indy 500 and 13th place, season-ending rank. Always open to new challenges, Ferrucci currently competes part-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving for Sam Hunt Racing.
The 2021 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season begins with the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama (HIGPA), which will be broadcast live on NBC on April 18 at 3 p.m. EDT. RLL won the previous HIGPA race from pole with Takuma Sato in 2019 and Graham Rahal brought the team its first 1-2 start since 2004 there, challenged for the win but retired with mechanical failure. The pandemic led to the cancelation of the 2020 race. All future on-track action can be seen on NBC, NBCSN or NBC’s Peacock Premium streaming service. For more information about the series or team, visit www.indycar.com and www.rahal.com.