Simmons to take over Dana ride

UPDATE This rumor is now upgraded to 'fact' today – see Hot News page for announcement.

03/31/06 According to this article at ESPN.com, Rahal Letterman Racing is preparing to announce that Indy Pro Series veteran Jeff Simmons will replace the late Paul Dana in the No. 17 Ethanol Honda/Panoz for the rest of the 2006 IndyCar season, ESPN.com has learned.

Team owner Bobby Rahal was unavailable for comment. The three-time CART National Champion and winner of the 1986 Indianapolis 500 is in China watching his son, Graham, participate in the A1GP race at the Shanghai circuit.

"Plans for the Ethanol car are undecided at this time," stated Ray Leto, acting general manager of Rahal Letterman Racing. "Bobby is out of the country this week, but he has been conferring with the sponsor and making progress on a replacement driver. We expect to finalize matters when Bobby returns early next week."

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