IndyCar: Rahal expands technical department

IndyCar: Rahal expands technical department

IndyCar

IndyCar: Rahal expands technical department

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Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing continues to bolster its technical department in an effort to rebound from a disappointing 2013 season, signing John Dick to serve as RLLR’s technical director.

Dick joins the team after working with Dale Coyne Racing through last season, earning a popular win at Detroit race 1 with stand-in driver Mike Conway. DCR engineer Bill Pappas departed the Illinois-based team late last year to serve as Graham Rahal’s engineer, and with Dick following suit, RLLR has reunited one of the most effective engineering combinations in the IndyCar Series.

The team has yet to sign its second driver, but when that seat is filled, RLLR’s Eddie Jones will continue to engineer the Honda-powered entry.

“John joined us officially on Monday and I’m really excited about what he brings to us with experience and from a technical perspective,” Rahal told RACER. “He really knows his stuff and will work in more of an overseeing technical role while Bill [Pappas] and Eddie [Jones] engineer the cars.”

Dick replaces Gerry Hughes who served as Takuma Sato’s engineer with RLLR in 2012 and was shifted to the technical director position in the middle of last season after he and Graham Rahal failed to produce meaningful results.

“My intent is to build up the technical department; Gerry moved back to England to work with Caterham F1, which I think is best for him, and John worked for me before – from 2000 to 2003 or so – with Max Papis and Kenny Brack, so there’s an immediate relationship in place already,” Rahal added.

A small piece of news emerged last week regarding RLLR’s quest to move forward with its sponsorship deal from the National Guard, which RACER’s Robin Miller first revealed in October. Since that news broke, a tug-of-war has gone on behind the scenes, with Panther Racing working hard to reacquire the National Guard contract through mechanisms put in place by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).
 
A number of former Panther Racing crew members working for team at the Rolex 24 at Daytona mentioned seeing a finding on the GAO website which listed Panther’s bid protest having been denied, which should allow both teams to move on with their respective plans.

 

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