By: Spencer Neff
April 5, 2021
On Monday morning, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing confirmed plans for the third entry in May 30’s 105th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge.
Joining full-time drivers Graham Rahal and Takuma Sato, 2019 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year Santino Ferrucci will drive the No. 45 entry for the team as he looks to qualify for his third “500”.
After starting 22nd and finishing seventh in his debut, the Woodbury, Connecticut-native started 19th and finished fourth in last year’s race, equalling his career-best IndyCar finish.
RLLR finished first and third in that race with Takuma Sato and Graham Rahal as part of a Top Four sweep for Honda-powered entries, the first for any engine manufacturer at Indy since 2015.
“I am excited to be competing in the Indianapolis 500 with Hy-Vee and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing,” Ferrucci exclaimed in this morning’s press release.
“It’s a great opportunity and I cannot thank the team, owners and partners enough for believing in me. I’m super excited to start spending some time at the shop in Indianapolis and preparing for an incredible run this May.”
In addition, Hy-Vee, a grocery store chain based in the Midwestern United States, will sponsor Ferrucci’s effort, as well as Graham Rahal’s No. 15 entry for the June 21 and August 21 races at Road America and World Wide Technology Raceway Gateway.
“It’s great to have Hy-Vee back once again. I took a lot of pride in representing them last year and felt that the Hy-Vee car performed so well at Iowa and helped get our relationship off to a good start,” Graham Rahal noted.
“It’s nice to see a company with such high standards like Hy-Vee consider Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing and consider the INDYCAR SERIES as a great platform to spread awareness of their brand, the quality of their product and their stores. We’re excited to work with them and grow the partnership.”
“The excitement and energy that the Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing team brings forth to our partnership is like none other,” added Hy-Vee CEO and Chairman of the Board Randy Edeker.
“The team truly cares about its fans just like we care about our customers at Hy-Vee. Since signing on as a sponsor last year, we’ve heard from people all over the country about our involvement in racing. We know we have a fantastic season coming up that fans across the country as well as our employees will enjoy.”
Last year, Hy-Vee sponsored the No. 45 entry with Spencer Pigot behind the wheel, as Pigot started 12th but crashed with four laps remaining and finished 25th, six laps down.
“It is great to have Hy-Vee as a partner of our program again,” Team Co-Owner Bobby Rahal added.
“My family and I live in the Midwest and it’s exciting to see Hy-Vee continue to grow. The sense of pride their employees have in their company and what Hy-Vee does to support their local communities is inspiring and something that we work to emulate every day within our team. We look forward to creating special moments for Hy-Vee customers and employees this season while promoting the Hy-Vee brand on a national stage.”
After competing two IndyCar seasons with Dale Coyne Racing, Ferrucci will return as he also begins his NASCAR career, driving for Sam Hunt Racing in the Xfinity Series on a part-time basis this year.
Header Image By Chris Jones/INDYCAR