Junior Open Wheel Talent

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Andersen Racing Testing Update

by Ryan Stringfield
Posted November 6, 2008 at 9:22 pm Indy Lights, Test

Andersen Racing has been busy testing several drivers for the 2009 Star Mazda and Indy Lights season. I have put together a brief synopsis on each driver below.

Star Mazda

  • Nathan Silva (F3-South America)
  • Richard Kent (Formula Renault 2.0, Star Mazda)
  • Conor Daly (Skip Barber National) ~future test
  • Josef Newgarden (Skip Barber National) ~future test

Nathan Silva of Brazil has limited car experience, having only completed 13 races. The 18 year old has been racing karts for several years though and is looking to make his mark in North America for 2009. He spent last season running F3 in South America with relatively uneventful results, driving for Razia Sports.

British driver Richard Kent is no stranger to Anderson Racing….The 19 year old completed a few Star Mazda tests with the team and was scheduled to make his debut at Mosport International Raceway. However, mechanical issues during practice prevented him from making a start. He came back to the U.S. for the series finale and claimed the top spot in his first outing. One would assume that if Kent is able to come up with the necessary funding, he would be a shoe-in with the team.

Conor Daly spent this season gaining as much experience as possible. He has tested more race cars this season than any other driver in the North American junior formula ranks. Conor has proven his speed this year by winning both the Skip Barber National Championship and most recently the prestigious Walter Hayes Trophy.

Josef Newgarden of Tennessee has gained a significant amount of experience this year running alongside Daly in Skip Barber. Seventeen year old Newgarden would be another solid choice for the team. The Team USA Scholarship driver has a very strong work ethic and has established himself world-wide by winning the Formula Ford Festival last month.

Indy Lights

  • Alistair Jackson (British F3) ~testing next week
  • Jonathan Bomarito (Atlantic Championship)
  • Jonathan Summerton (Atlantic Championship) ~test next week
  • Peter Dempsey (Star Mazda) ~future test
  • Jeff Westphal (Pacific F2000) ~testing next week

Alistair Jackson of Great Britain has plenty of European experience that would aide his Indy Lights efforts, should he commit for 2009. The 19 year old (almost 20 year old), has spent the last three years developing in various F3 series: namely the British and Asia F3 ranks. I would expect Jackson to do quite well in a test with Anderson.

Atlantic Championship driver Jonathan Bomarito is another driver with a tireless work ethic. He has spent the last four years running the Atlantic Championship and has won at least one race in 3 out of the 4 seasons. Without a doubt, he is ready and capable of doing quite well in the Indy Lights series for 2009.

American Jonathan Summerton has raced in both America and Europe, making him one of the most experienced drivers in this group. Summerton is only twenty years old but has really taken all the right steps in his development as a race car driver. He would fit in nicely with the Indy Lights crowd, producing results immediately.

Irishman Peter Dempsey has won the prestigious Walter Hayes Trophy twice (consecutively) and dominated several races in the 2008 Star Mazda championship. With a little testing time to adapt to the high horsepower Indy Lights car, Peter would really shine. His biggest hindrance is funding, …. if any potential sponsors were watching him this year…he WILL find the necessary funding. Great candidate should he find the money to compete and test.

Jeff Westphal has flown under the radar of many this season running in the Pacific F2000 Championship. The 22 year old was absolutely dominant in the series; claiming 10 victories in 12 starts enroute to the series championship. I’m not sure he is ready for the Indy Lights series in 2009, but he is a very capable driver who will turn many heads in the coming years.

Other news regarding Andersen Racing tests:
Anders Krohn recently completed a Star Mazda test with the team.
Joel Miller recently completed a Indy Lights test with the team.

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