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Hunter-Reay to Andretti AutosportUPDATE #6 As we reported back on December 27th as 'fact' - see Andretti Autosport press release on Hunter-Reay.
12/27/09 We are upgrading this rumor to 'fact' today. According to AR1.com sources Hunter-Reay will drive the No. 27 Andretti car with backing by more than just IZOD. The team now has 3 American drivers in its stable (Danica and Andretti's son Marco being the other two) and in Kanaan and Hunter-Reay now have at least two drivers that can help set the cars up to be more competitive than in 2009 where they won zero, count them, zero, races. We have updated our 2010 IndyCar Silly Season page above.
12/24/09 We are hearing that RHR's deal with Andretti is only for a couple of select races before the Indy 500 and for the 500 itself, but nothing thereafter. Could we see RHR win the Indy 500 and then be without a ride? We doubt that would happen, as the prize money from the race would keep the ride going for a few races if the team elected to use their share for that. We also doubt that the IRL and IZOD (who is also RHR's personal endorsement sponsor) would allow an Indy 500 winner to be sitting on the pit wall for the rest of the season. So in effect, RHR's future is in his own hands. He just has to win the biggest race on the planet, and he will be fine. Talk about pressure...
12/02/09 In an interview Tuesday to announce the Danica Patrick deal Michael Andretti has confirmed that Ryan Hunter Reay is in line for the final seat with Andretti Autosport next season.
Andretti said Hunter-Reay was currently at the top of the list for his fourth car, which was driven by Hideki Mutoh this year.
"We have a lot of interest in Ryan for sure," said Andretti. [Editor's Note: Of course he would, he comes with IZOD backing]
"If it would all work out, it would be great. I think he'd be really a good addition to our line-up, and I think he could help push the other ones and make us all better. That would be our first choice at the moment.
"I feel good that we're going to get something," said Andretti. "We still have a way to go, but it's still early. I think we have a real good shot at having four cars."
11/05/09 Andretti, who now owns and runs the team without Green and Savoree from years passed, acknowledge that RHR was on his "short list" for next season, if sponsorship could be found.
11/05/09 We can tell you that no deal is done yet for Hunter-Reay and his new team will not be part of Thursday's IRL IZOD announcement.
11/04/09 We are hearing that Ryan Hunter-Reay is in talks with Michael Andretti’s now all-Andretti owned and run race team. Hunter-Reay’s deal would obviously include backing from IZOD and should put him with a race team capable of winning races in 2010. However, Andretti's team didn't seem to be even close to a win this past year, so we have to wonder if this is the best bet. We think that since Penske is running a third car, that Ganassi should be running Ryan. I have to think that one of VanHeusen brands (IZOD's parent company) would be nicely placed in Target after all...
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