Scheckter gets downsized

Posted by Iannucci | 2/01/2008 | 10 comments »
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The good news for Tomas Scheckter is it looks like he scored a very good ride. The bad news is it's for only three races.

The Indianapolis 500 is on the verge of receiving another winning combination when Penske-powered Luczo Dragon Racing announces its multi-race program for this Indy Racing League season.

Luczo Dragon, co-owned by Roger Penske's son, Jay, and Steve Luczo, fielded a car for Ryan Briscoe in last year's 500. Jay Penske said Thursday that details should be finalized next week, but he endorsed driver Tomas Scheckter, who is unemployed after two seasons at Vision Racing.

Jay Penske said his team plans to run one race prior to Indy -- likely the April 27 event at Kansas Speedway -- and one other in the market of the primary sponsor.

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It's an interesting point of conversation. Would you rather be a driver with a full-season backmarker team, or one with a three-race deal that gives you a very real shot at winning the Indy 500?

Speaking of that conundrum, does the affirmation of Scheckter's departure mean AJ Foyt IV will be back with a two-car Vision Racing team?

UPDATE: Kudos to reader John who discovered that the Vision Racing site now lists just Ed Carpenter and Foyt as drivers. Foyt's entry reads "A.J. Foyt IV, is entering his second season with Vision Racing..."

Hey, who needs an official announcement, right?


  1. Anonymous // February 01, 2008 8:40 AM  

    If I had to guess, I'd guess IV will stay with Vision. My guess is based solely on his participation with Vision Racing at the Rolex 24 hour race last week.

    I'm surprised by the Scheckter deal. Though, winning the Indianapolis 500 should be the goal of every race driver, and anything that puts that goal within reach is good.

  2. Fred Hurley // February 01, 2008 10:14 AM  

    And Luczo Dragon seems like the kind of team that might become a legit, full-season team, using the revenue sharing system. Cool.

  3. Anonymous // February 01, 2008 11:03 AM  

    I think Tabernerus is right. If they can find a really good primary sponsor, the TEAM program can kick in for this bunch.

    In the meantime, I hope they maintain their current colors; the car reminds me of the old Pennzoil No. 4.

    Like I said on my blog, it looks like May's about to be more fun. Kudos to Jay for his pick.

  4. John in Speedway // February 01, 2008 12:15 PM  

    I'm sure Tomas is thrilled. I guarantee he will be locked into the grid on day one of qualifying, and I predict he'll be a contender for the pole. He has enough experience that they might send him out more than once on day 1 of qualifying if necessary, to get a shot at the pole.

  5. Jennifer Coomer // February 01, 2008 5:01 PM  

    this is poop. i know i really don't know anything. but how is it that great drivers can't get good full-time rides? no wonder they leave. i hope this does turn into a season long ride.

  6. Anonymous // February 01, 2008 8:14 PM  


    Sadly, thirteen years of harping on "The Split", has gotten us to this point (trying to scrape together anything one can get). I agree with you 100%, but hopefully Tomas can really shine and get something more full time out of this.

  7. johnnyCynic // February 01, 2008 10:18 PM  

    Tomas is a young guy and racing is his profession, so I have to imagine going from a full-time ride to three races, albeit one of those is Indy, would be a pretty big pay cut that he would feel.

    I've always liked Scheckter so I just hope this leads to something bigger for 2009.

  8. Anonymous // February 02, 2008 6:38 AM  

    the #2 vision racing hats are on sale at the IMS gift shop for $10 bucks..

  9. Fred Hurley // February 02, 2008 7:49 AM  

    Are we sure their plan is to only run those three race no matter what? I mean, if they win at Kansas, wouldn't that change their plans a bit? And with Penske-supported (to whatever extent) cars, and Scheckter driving on a 1.5-mile oval, it's not that far-fetched. Everyone's part-time until a sponsor says otherwise, no?

  10. Puretone Audio // February 05, 2008 8:22 AM  

    Scheckter took over a million Georgebucks for his salary last year, so I'm having a bit of trouble with my sympathy vote here.

    Luckily for Tomas, there has been someone else dominating in the Most Overpaid IndyCar Driver (MOID) standings the past few seasons.