Alpine junior Lundgaard to make IndyCar debut this weekend


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Alpine junior driver Christian Lundgaard will make his IndyCar debut with Rahal Letterman Lanigan at the Indianapolis grand prix circuit this weekend.

Lundgaard, who tested for the team at Barber Motorsport Park last month, will take over the number 45 car which Santino Ferrucci has driven in five of the last six races.

Alpine racing director Davide Brivio said the F1 team is “excited to see how Christian converts this opportunity.”

Halfway through his second season of Formula 2, Lundgaard lies 12th in the standings, which are headed by fellow Alpine junior Oscar Piastri and Guanyu Zhou.

“Christian remains an important part of the Alpine Academy as he has shown huge promise throughout his junior career,” said Brivio. “Now, two seasons into FIA Formula 2, we are evaluating different options for the next stage, but for this particular moment we are just focusing on the present; enjoy a different type of car and environment, work hard and deliver on track.”

Team co-owner Bobby Rahal expects the newcomer will find the Indianapolis circuit more similar to those he is used to than other tracks on the IndyCar schedule.

Christian Lundgaard, RLL, IndyCar, 2021
Lundgaard has already tested for the team at Barber
“We were very pleased with the job that Christian did at our recent test at Barber Motorsports Park and are looking forward to seeing him perform at Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” he said Bobby Rahal. “It’s going to be a new experience and a big challenge due to the lack of practice time compared to other races.

“The road course is very much like European circuits given that it was designed for Formula 1 and grand prix races, so I think it will be less of an issue than going to one of our more traditional IndyCar race tracks. Given the lack of test time and practice time, we don’t have any grand expectations of him other than to go out and do a steady job and go from there.”

Lundgaard, who has also tested Alpine’s F1 car, said he has watched every IndyCar race this year and is “super excited” the chance to join the championship.

“I’ve been very fortunate so far in my career to drive some incredible race cars and I’m looking forward to officially adding IndyCar to that list,” he said. “In preparation for this race, I tested the car and it felt pretty awesome and I’m sure it will feel even better at a race weekend in race conditions alongside all the hugely talented drivers in the field.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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5 comments on “Alpine junior Lundgaard to make IndyCar debut this weekend”

  1. Unusual move, when was the last time someone in F2 / GP2 or even F3000 made a cameo in the states halfway through a championship? There might be plenty, but I can’t think of any right now. Best of luck to him regardless.

    1. RandomMallard (@)
      9th August 2021, 11:29

      @bernasaurus He wasn’t the most recent driver to do this (see below), but the driver who Lundgaard is replacing (Santino Ferruci) took a one off drive at the Detroit double header in June 2018, just before he lost his drive in F2 following the Silverstone incidents.

      Also, Jordan King competed in the Indy 500 in 2019 instead of the Monaco F2 round, while Pato O’Ward went in the other direction and replaced (insert meme here) Mahaveer Raghunathan in F2 in Austria in 2019, after MR was suspended due to penalty points.

  2. @randommallard Ha! Fantastic answer, thank you!

  3. Lundgaard has had some rotten luck in F2 this year and deserves to be higher in the standings than 12th – glad to see Alpine and RLL giving him this chance.

    1. Lundgaard has shown very little, maybe indy can allow him to show something.

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