Conor Daly and the U.S. Air Force will return to Ed Carpenter Racing in a continuation of the program that saw the Indiana native share the No. 20 Chevy on road and street courses with its team owner.
He will race the No. 20 at 13 NTT IndyCar Series road and street courses rounds, and in a third ECR entry for the Indy 500.
“It feels incredible to have another year together with the U.S. Air Force and Ed Carpenter Racing,” Daly said. “Continuity has always been helpful for me in my career; the fact that we are able to hit the ground running in 2021 already having experience together gives me a lot of confidence. Every day we learn more and develop a stronger relationship.”
While Daly’s desire to become a full-season driver for ECR did not come to pass, the Air Force has committed to sponsoring 10 of the 13 road and street races, and his Indy 500 effort.
“This would not be possible without the support of the U.S. Air Force, who have been an incredibly supportive and loyal partner,” Daly added. “I want nothing more than to win races and compete for the entrant championship for the Airmen, the guys at ECR and my boss Ed, who has become a true friend of mine. I can’t wait to get back to work!”
Daly’s association with the Air Force enters its fourth season in IndyCar, and its second with ECR.
“This partnership draws a parallel with how we fly, fight and win,” said Maj. Jason Wyche, Chief, Air Force National Events Branch at Air Force Recruiting Service. “Both organizations rely on the principles of science, technology, engineering and math to accomplish the mission. The technology that goes into these cars is similar to what we rely on when flying our fighter jets. Also, teamwork is especially important with the Air Force just like at the Indy 500. Everything just ties in perfectly with how we accomplish our respective missions. That’s what makes this a great partnership!”
Although unconfirmed, Daly also hopes to continue racing on ovals for Carlin Racing outside of the Indy 500, where he piloted the No. 59 Chevy to pole at Iowa Round 1, and delivered his best results of the year — four top 10s — while sharing the car with Max Chilton.
Sponsors for the three rounds that won’t feature Air Force branding will be revealed at a later date.