By Luis Torres, Staff Writer
Rinus VeeKay (clavicle) won’t compete in this Sunday’s NTT IndyCar Series race at Road America following a cycling accident Monday. Instead, Oliver Askew will pilot his No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet.
ECR issued a statement that the GMR Grand Prix winner underwent surgery to repair a fractured left clavicle. Certainly, a devastating blow for VeeKay’s title aspirations as his eyes shift on returning at Mid-Ohio July 4th weekend.
“What happened was very unfortunate and definitely not the greatest timing! The surgery went well, I am not in any pain.” VeeKay stated. “I definitely wanted to be out there fighting for my place in the championship and driving the Direct Supply car.
“I will give it all I have and be ready for Mid-Ohio! I am very thankful for everyone at ECR that helped me and stayed up very late to get everything for the surgery arranged. I would also like to say a big thank you to everyone at OrthoIndy who got me all fixed up!”
VeeKay is currently fifth in points, trailing Pato O’Ward by 56 points after eight races.
For Askew, it’ll mark the second straight race he’s filling in for a full-time driver. He’s fresh off filling in for Felix Rosenqvist for the second dual race at Belle Isle. However, Askew’s return to the sport ended early due to power train issues and finished 25th.
Askew stated he’s thankful to be given an opportunity to drive for ECR, but hopes VeeKay has a quick recovery.
“I’m thankful that Ed and his ECR team trust me to take over the No. 21 Chevrolet this weekend,” said Askew. “They have a strong program and I look forward to helping them in every way possible at Road America.”
Team owner Ed Carpenter remains confident his No. 21 team will get the job done with Askew behind the wheel.
“I want to wish Rinus a speedy recovery, I know the No. 21 Chevrolet will be missing him,” said Carpenter. “It’s a shame that he has to miss this round, but he will come back strong. I want to thank Oliver for being ready and able to step in and give the car a strong run.”