Two of the major players in the IndyCar Series are staying with Team Penske for 2019 and beyond, while it looks like Scott Dixon may be getting a highly touted newcomer as his teammate at Chip Ganassi Racing next season.
Roger Penske confirmed Sunday that Will Power and Simon Pagenaud (pictured above, right to left) have re-signed.
“Yes, everything is set and everyone is coming back,” said The Captain, who usually doesn’t comment on drivers’ contracts until after the season. “It’s a good group.”
Power captured last May’s Indianapolis 500 and has been with Penske since 2009.
“I’m very happy – everything is good and I’m with the best team in racing,” said the 37-year-old Australian who has racked up 29 of his 32 victories and 48 of 53 pole positions driving for Team Penske.
Pagenaud, the 2016 IndyCar car champion, had been the subject of rumors the past couple months because his contract was expiring after 2018 and the team was reportedly interested in Robert Wickens.
“I don’t know how that got started or where it came from but I won the championship and finished second last year,” said the 34-year-old Frenchman who is without a win for the first time since 2015 when he joined Team Penske. “I’m very happy here and glad we are moving on.”
Josef Newgarden is thought to be in the second year of a three-year deal and it’s not known the length of the deals for Power and Pagenaud but Penske traditionally likes two- or three-year contracts.
The best unfilled seat at the moment would be the No. 10 car for Chip Ganassi Racing. The owner said last week he was looking to upgrade for next season and RACER has learned that Felix Rosenqvist is the leading candidate to take Ed Jones’ place.
The 26-year-old Swede – who along with Dixon is represented by former F1 and IndyCar driver Stefan Johansson – has been a Formula 3 champion, a front-runner in Formula E and won in his Indy Lights debut in 2015, going on to score two more victories that year. He tested for Ganassi at Mid-Ohio in 2016 and again last year, and impressed the team with his savvy, skill and feedback.
Jones is understood to have been aware of the pending change and is searching for another seat.
Johansson did not offer comments Sunday prior to the ABC 500 at Pocono. When reached by RACER, Ganassi called it a rumor.