A Full Field Already, Dale Coyne Racing, Byrd Racing Team Up For 3rd Entry In Indy 500 For James Dav
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla – We normally get at least one Indy 500 entry announced the opening race weekend in St. Pete. It’s becoming an annual tradition. Over the past eight days, we’ve had four entries announced including one on Friday morning.
Last week, Clauson Marshall Racing announced a new team and will bring Pippa Mann as the driver. Also last week, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing announced that Sage Karam will be back.
This week, we’ve seen Carlin announce Pato O’Ward on Thursday and now Dale Coyne Racing announces on Friday that they have teamed with Byrd Racing to bring James Davison to pilot their third car for the 103rd Running in May.
That officially fills the field at 33 drivers with the No. 33 Honda entry.
Byrd Racing partnered with Davison for last year’s race and teamed with AJ Foyt Racing. He started 19th and finished 33rd. This will be the Australian natives fifth attempt at making the ‘500 as he’s made his previous four tries.
Davison, started 28th and finished 16th in 2014 with KV Racing. That rookie year was his best start and finish in four tries. The next two years (2015, 2017) he raced for Coyne in starting 33rd in both years but finishing 27th in 2016 and 20th in 2017.
He also made two starts in 2013 for DCR, one at Mid-Ohio (15th) and Sonoma (18th).
I’m enraptured to be rejoining Dale Coyne Racing with Byrd Hollinger Belardi,” expressed Davison. “Dale’s team is special in many ways and I have fond memories driving the #18 and #19 cars at the 500 in the past. We endeavor to recreate our prior success together and can’t wait to get after it.”
With the addition of Davison, DCR will once again be running multiple entries at the Indianapolis 500 with Davison joining full season drivers Sebastien Bourdais (#18 Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan Racing) and rookie Santino Ferrucci (#19 Dale Coyne Racing).
“We’re very excited to have James (Davison) come back to the team for the Indianapolis 500,” said Team Owner Dale Coyne. “He stepped in last minute for us with hardly any practice as a substitute driver to Sebastien (Bourdais) a couple of years ago and did a great job under the circumstances and showed he has the speed to run with the best of them. We’re also happy to be partnering once again with the Byrd family who have a long history with the Indy 500, as well as Hollinger MotorSport, and we look forward to working with Brian Belardi and his team.”
Davison is not the only one making a return with the Dale Coyne team, Jonathan Byrd’s Racing last partnered up with the Plainfield, Illinois-based squad in 2016 as the primary sponsor on its #18 car and also ran an Indy-only entry for the late Bryan Clauson.
“It was only a matter of time before we formed a partnership with Dale Coyne Racing for the Indianapolis 500 this year,” shared David Byrd, one of the principals of Jonathan Byrd’s Racing. “We’re all connected in one way or another. Both the Byrd family and James have a history with Dale and his team and last year James, Brad (Hollinger) and I partnered with Belardi Auto Racing, so this year’s deal came together very naturally. Dale’s team has had strong runs at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway the last couple of years and we hope to continue that with them.”
Although they’ve made numerous appearances at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Indy Lights Series’ Freedom 100, this will mark only the second time that Belardi Auto Racing fields a co-entry for the Indianapolis 500, with their first one coming last season, also with Davison, Jonathan Byrd’s Racing and Hollinger MotorSport.
“I’m very happy to have Belardi Auto Racing once again part of the Indianapolis 500,” said Team Owner Brian Belardi. “I’m especially excited to be partnering with Dale Coyne Racing, who not only have a lot of experience in IndyCar, but they’ve proven time and time again how competitive their cars are at the Speedway, and I believe that with the great group of partners we have and with James Davison behind the wheel we are setting ourselves up for a very successful month of May at Indianapolis.”