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Karthikeyan eyes possible move to IndyCar UPDATE #8 A reader writes, I just saw the rumors page that Adrian Sutil or Jules Bianchi are in line for the Force-India seat, making it more likely that Narain Karthikeyan will get the second Coyne seat.  Personally, I think this is good news. 

Of course, people will complain about another ride-buying F1 reject, whose name they can't pronounce.  And while that may be so, the same provincial goobers will fail to realize is that Karthikeyan is from a country with a growing economy and get this, ONE BILLION PEOPLE.  Yes, that's billion, with a B.

Plus, the nabobs running IndyCar won't look to build off his presence.  They won't look to parlay his presence into attracting younger Indian drivers, who maybe can't afford F1.  They won't look to attract Indian sponsors, nor build an Indian television following, despite again, ONE BILLION PEOPLE living there.  I guess, according to those who run IndyCar, they are not well, the desired people. 

Ultimately, Karthikeyan will spend a year or two in IndyCar, move along, and it will be like he was never even here.  And golden opportunity will be lost.  Don Samuels, Erie, Pennsylvania

02/17/13 Latest rumors say Karthikeyan is likely to land the second Dale Coyne seat alongside Justin Wilson if he doesn't get the second Force India F1 seat.  With Sebring testing coming up we'll see if he in the car or not.

01/26/13 Narain Karthikeyan believes that the oval racing experience he gained in the NASCAR Trucks will help him if his planned switch to IndyCar comes off. The 36-year-old Indian confirmed to AUTOSPORT magazine this week that he is focusing on landing a drive in American single-seater racing if he does not land a Formula 1 role. He has held preliminary talks with a number of teams, including Chip Ganassi Racing and Andretti Autosport, but has yet to finalize a deal despite his ability to bring a part-budget for the 2013 season.

"There are obviously some very big differences between NASCAR and IndyCar, but the oval racing experience I have can only help. Karthikeyan told AUTOSPORT. "There will be a lot to learn, but at least I have a small advantage over a total rookie, so hopefully with the experience I have, I should be able to do a good job and prove myself."

01/24/13 This rumor goes from 'false' to 'speculation' today because Narain Karthikeyan says in this week's AUTOSPORT magazine that he is considering a switch to the IZOD IndyCar Series.

"Up until now, the focus has been on F1, but now is the time to look seriously at alternatives," he said. "I want to continue to race single-seaters and, outside of F1, IndyCar is the best option."

"After spending the last two years with HRT in F1, I want the chance to do something properly," he said. "Getting a test would be a good first step and a chance to adapt to the car and see where we are.

"I know there aren't dozens of paid IndyCar drives, but it's a big series and it's growing, so there's the chance to race professionally after the first year. We're still just talking for now." zzzz

10/20/12 This rumor is downgraded to 'false' today. Narain Karthikeyan took to Twitter to put an end to speculation that surrounded his future participation in Formula 1 with HRT F1.

Rumors of a switch to the American-based IndyCar series had surrounded Karthikeyan following the end of the F1 summer break, but Karthikeyan himself nipped them in the bud. 

Karthikeyan tweeted: "Don't know where all these Indy stories are coming from - definitely not me! Focus on F1 with HRT for 2013 so anything else is a no-go!"

10/19/12 (GMM)  Narain Karthikeyan says he is in the running to keep his HRT seat next year.

Reports this week suggested the Indian, who returned to F1 with the backmarker Spanish team after establishing a Nascar career in 2010, could revert to the American racing scene for 2013 and is currently seeking an IndyCar test.

But Karthikeyan, 35, said on Friday he actually deserves a better F1 seat.

"I would definitely like the possibility since I have clearly proved that I have the speed to deserve a shot higher up the grid," he told the Indian Express, when asked if he would like a Force India seat.

"But having said that, I think they have their own plans as always so for now I am concentrating on finishing this season on a strong note," Karthikeyan added.

HRT has said it will retain Pedro de la Rosa next year, but the occupant of the other seat for 2013 is much less clear.

"Right now I would like to stay with HRT for 2013 as we can expect more progress with proper infrastructure which has been in place now," the Indian said.

"I think it will be decided over the winter once the season is through."

Narain Karthikeyan to try his hand at IndyCar racing?
(GMM)  Narain Karthikeyan is pushing for "an IndyCar test", the German language Speed Week reports.

This week, we reported that while HRT is to keep Pedro de la Rosa at the wheel in 2013, the fate of Indian Karthikeyan is much less clear.

After his initial F1 foray ended after a single season with Jordan in 2005, Karthikeyan was establishing a career in Nascar in 2010 when the opportunity to return to F1 arose.

Now, he is "seeking an IndyCar test", Mathias Brunner reported in Speed Week, adding that "negotiations with different teams" are currently taking place.

10/05/12 If India’s most popular racing driver grows tired of racing for the tail-end HRT Formula One team, he could be up for a move to the IZOD IndyCar Series in 2013.

35-year-old Narain Karthikeyan, who became the first Indian to compete in F1 in 2005, has represented his nation of a billion-plus countrymen through taking part in 40 Grand Prixs, the A1GP series, at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and even in NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series, but has struggled to find a permanent home in any single championship.

Now in his second season with HRT—one that lasted only eight of 19 rounds in 2011—Karthikeyan has had predictable outcomes at every race, suffering early retirements or finishes well outside of the points.

But as he told SPEED.com in an exclusive on Thursday, a return to America to try his hand at racing in the IndyCar Series is one of his options.

“We still haven’t decided yet, but I have several friends who are racing in IndyCar,” he said while preparing for this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix. “We have to see when the [F1] season is over.”

09/03/12 According to AR1.com sources, Indian F1 driver Narain Karthikeyan is pondering a possible move to IndyCar in 2013.  The question will be whether his sponsors deem the weak IndyCar TV package worth the money against F1's far greater global reach. A lot of Indians live in the USA (potential fans) and Narain had fairly good support in NASCAR.  Mark C. reporting from Baltimore
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