By Josh Farmer, IndyCar Reporter
The Verizon IndyCar Series’ silly season is nearly complete as Ed Carpenter Racing announced that driver Spencer Pigot will return to the team for the 2017 season.
The 23-year-old from Orlando, Florida will drive the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet on the road and street courses while team owner/driver Ed Carpenter will drive on the ovals.
“I’m very excited to be staying with Ed Carpenter Racing for the 2017 season,” Pigot said. “It’s a great feeling to know that I have a secure ride for all of the road and street course races so we can start preparing for the season now. I can’t thank everyone at ECR, P1 Management and Rising Star Racing enough for their help getting this deal done.”
Returning to the team will make Pigot the first driver to drive the No. 20 Chevrolet on the road and street courses in consecutive years.
“We are happy to have Spencer back,” said Carpenter. “It was a challenging situation for him to step into the team last year mid-season as a rookie. We believe that Spencer has the potential to be a contender in this sport and we will continue to focus on maximizing that potential.”
Pigot joined the team at the Chevrolet Duel in Detroit after having started the season driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. He used Mazda scholarship money earned from winning the 2015 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tire championship to race in the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, the IndyCar Grand Prix and the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
Pigot scored two top-ten finishes which both came with impressive drives from the back to the front. He logged a ninth place finish at Road America after starting 17th and eclipsed that feat at Mid-Ohio when he started in 19th place and finished in seventh.
Having those numbers as a baseline, Pigot hopes to improve heading into his Sophmore season.
“I learned a lot in my rookie year and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to build on that experience. I know I have the team around me to fight at the front and that’s what we’ll be trying to do in 2017,” said Pigot.
This all but completes the IndyCar silly season, the only unknown being the second entry at Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. Mikhail Aleshin drove for the team in 2016 but it is known that sponsorship issues may hamper the Russian’s efforts to return to the team in 2017.