Alex Palou Shifts To Chip Ganassi Racing

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Alex Palou was fastest during NTT IndyCar Series practice Thursday on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. (IndyCar Photo)
Alex Palou has joined Chip Ganassi Racing for the 2021 NTT IndyCar Series season. (IndyCar Photo)

CONCORD, N.C. – Alex Palou has been officially named the newest driver at Chip Ganassi Racing’s NTT IndyCar Series team.

Palou replaces Felix Rosenqvist, who earlier Wednesday was announced as a driver at Arrow McLaren SP.

“To say I’m thrilled or excited to be making this step in my career would be an understatement,” said Palou. “Driving for Chip Ganassi is just a dream come true. I’ve followed the team for as long as I can remember, and it’s the kind of team and owner any driver would want to race for. Scott has had another tremendous season, reaching 50 wins and a sixth title, so you absolutely couldn’t ask for anything more in a teammate. I can’t wait to work with Marcus and Jimmie as well, and to start contributing to the team and getting to spend more time with everyone.”

Palou takes over the No. 10 Honda previously driven by Rosenqvist the past two seasons. He joins six-time NTT IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon, seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson and re-signed driver Marcus Ericsson on a four-car team in 2021.

“I love to watch the growth of young drivers,” said Mike Hull, Managing Director, Chip Ganassi Racing. “This year racing Indy cars has been very difficult for young drivers like Alex who hadn’t had the opportunity to visually see the tracks in advance, nor have days of practice in private team testing, or open testing or three-day weekends. Putting that into perspective, he did a heck of a job. We had an opening, and he became available, and Chip has a great eye for talent. Alex has that spark, that intangible thing you combine with talent that is a lot of fun. It’s a great exploration thing, actually. You’re exploring how far you can go, and he has one year of experience with a quality team, quality engineering and a quality teammate. He stood up to that test extremely well.”

Palou scored his first-career podium at Road America en route to a 16th place result in the championship standings. Prior to that, he won a Super Formula Championship race in 2019, competed at the All-Japan Formula 3 championship in 2017, recorded his first race in the Formula 3 Series in 2015, and made his debut in open-wheel racing competing in the Euroformula Open Championship in 2014.

Palou debuted at the Indianapolis 500 by qualifying for the Fast 9 Pole Position Shootout in his first visit to Indianapolis Motor Speedway, which resulted in a seven-place starting position. The rookie also made three starts inside the top four by qualifying third at Road America in race two, fourth at Mid-Ohio race two and fourth again at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course in race two. He also ran as high as 11th in championship points after at Iowa Speedway.