By Luis Torres, Staff Writer
INDYCAR veteran James Davison will be competing in the 104th Indianapolis 500 Presented by Gainbridge in a collaboration effort led by Dale Coyne Racing.
The third DCR Honda entry will be sponsored by Jacob Construction with Davison’s car number being No. 51. Both are representations of NASCAR’s Rick Ware Racing, who’ll be attempting their NTT IndyCar Series debut.
Davison recently competed for Ware’s Cup Series entity last Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway where he finished 30th. He’ll be make an additional two Cup starts for Ware this weekend at Michigan International Speedway, piloting the No. 51 Ford Mustang.
“It is not too often I get to experience a ‘first’ in motorsports,” said Rick Ware, owner of RWR. “However, this year we not only won an International Championship, RWR will be entered into the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500. This is definitely a bucket list item that I’ve had for a long time. I am excited to be partnered together with Dale Coyne Racing, BYRD Racing and Belardi to showcase our efforts.”
In addition of Coyne and Ware, BYRD and Belardi Auto Racing will also back the effort.
When Thursday morning’s monstrous announcement was made, Davison was overjoyed to be back with DCR.
“Last year we had a great run qualifying and finishing in the top half of the field, and we intend to replicate and improve on that,” said Davison. “The Byrd family, Brian Belardi, and Dale Coyne have been loyal believers in me and have demonstrated that in a way for which I will forever be grateful, and I am excited to be able to now enjoy the support of Rick Ware Racing as well.
“While a lot will be different this year due to the unusual circumstances, it is still an exciting time to be involved in Indy car racing under the stewardship of the Penske Corporation and to have the opportunity to get on track next week at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”
This year’s running of the Indy 500 will mark Davison’s sixth overall appearance and the fourth with DCR. Last year, Davison had his best outing when he crossed the line in 12th.
“James had great runs the last couple times he’s raced at the Indy 500 for us. He picked up his best finish last season and we look forward to seeing him build on that result this year,” said Dale Coyne, owner of DCR. “It’s also great to be continuing our partnership with BYRD and Belardi and we’re happy to be welcoming Rick Ware to the NTT IndyCar Series for his first Indy 500.”
As for BYRD Racing, it’ll be the third time they’ve partnered up with Coyne (2016 and 2019).
“Our previous two Indy 500 partnerships with Dale have been nothing short of fantastic,” said David Byrd, owner of BYRD Racing. “We are just over the moon to be working together again, while also extending our relationship with Brian Belardi and starting a new one with Rick Ware Racing. We are definitely looking forward to picking up right where we left off last May.”
Belardi Auto Racing owner Brian Belardi also shared the same excitement as it’ll be his second year partnering with up Davison, BYRD and Coyne and the first with Ware.
“Last year was an amazing finish and a great platform to build on with our 12th place result,” said Belardi. “I can’t wait to see what the team is capable of accomplishing this year building off the momentum from 2019.”
As for the “Month of August,” Davison’s No. 51 squad will begin their quest for what they’ll hope to be a successful effort Wednesday, August 12 when practice begins. The 104th running of the Indy 500 commences Sunday, August 23 at 2:30 p.m. EST on NBC.