By Christopher DeHarde, IndyCar & Road to Indy Writer
Spencer Pigot has been confirmed by Ed Carpenter Racing as the driver of the team’s No. 21 Chevrolet for the entire 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series schedule, replacing JR Hildebrand.
Pigot had competed in the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevrolet for the team on road and street courses while the eponymous team owner raced the No. 20 car on the ovals. Pigot earned this role after racing the 2016 Indianapolis 500 for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.
Pigot’s car will be primarily sponsored by Fuzzy’s, Preferred Freezer Services and Direct Supply.
“To say I am excited about 2018 would be an understatement,” said Pigot in a team release. “I have really enjoyed my time so far with Ed Carpenter Racing and this is the next step in what I hope is a long, successful partnership with the team in the Verizon IndyCar Series.”
“It is very exciting to be announcing that Spencer will be competing in a full-time role for ECR in 2018. Spencer made significant strides from his rookie season into his sophomore year and we see much more potential in his ability,” said team owner Ed Carpenter in a team release.
Pigot’s 2017 season has been one with several luckless results. While running near the front at St. Petersburg and Toronto, misfortune caused the American to have less than ideal results. A brake failure in St. Petersburg dropped Pigot out of the race from a top five run while at Toronto a first pit stop under caution dropped Pigot through the field and by being near so many cars, one of his tires was cut after a stellar early run.
This move is the best thing that could come for both driver and team. Pigot is a rising star in IndyCar racing and a proven champion on track. He’s the winningest driver across the Mazda Road to Indy (24 wins) and boasts two championships with Pro Mazda and Indy Lights in 2014 and 2015, respectively.
On the other side of the team, Carpenter will return to drive the ovals for the No. 20 car while the road and street course program is still coming together.