Early for Indy 500 count, but count on Buddy Lazier

Question: As most full-season rides are already occupied by now, silly season turns to Indy-only rides. Here's hoping AJ Allmendinger gets another chance at the Speedway because he was quite good there last year. Would he be interested? Also, how many additional cars do you expect? A fifth at Andretti, a second Foyt, a third Schmidt, the Dragon, one D&R in partnership with somebody else other than Panther, a second Fisher, a third KV, a second Herta, the Lazier car? Regarding international races for early 2015, I've read rumors online suggesting middle Eastern rounds and a South African one. Surfers Paradise should also have packed stands with Dixon, Power and Briscoe all in top machinery. Also a French round could be successful, since they don't have an F1 race anymore and because of Bourdais. Dijon would be awesome for IndyCar. (Yannick, Cologne, Germany)

Answer: Lots to consider, for sure. Certainly all of the cars you've mentioned are possible, but it's still too early to get a firm grasp on which ones will come to be. However, I think you can count Buddy Lazier as an absolute yes, and I'm told their family program is coming together nicely. I know Bob Lazier, Buddy's father, is excited about it. By the way, I sat next to Will Power during an IndyCar dinner last night, and we talked at length about how good Lazier has been at the Speedway over the years. I think a lot of people look at his 1996 win against a split field and don't consider all the other great runs he's had. He's been very good at IMS for a long time with a couple of second-place finishes and two other top-fives thrown in. As for international races, I'm still going to withhold speculation until I see something firm. IndyCar was burned by what happened in China, and I can think of a handful of other places where there was strong speculation regarding a race. Indy Star

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