Tagliani To Fill In For Franchitti

Alex Tagliani wiwas penalized by IMSA for on-track contact at Watkins Glen on June 28.
Alex Tagliani
Alex Tagliani

INDIANAPOLIS — Veteran IZOD IndyCar Series driver Alex Tagliani has been named as the substitute driver for three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti for the season finale at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.

Tagliani will guide the No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing entry in the Oct. 19 MAVTV 500 at the two-mile superspeedway while Franchitti continues to recover from injuries suffered in a crash during this past weekend’s Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston.

Tagliani drove for Barracuda Racing in 13 events in the series earlier this season. He has one career IndyCar victory.

“As a driver you never want an opportunity like this to come under these circumstances, but I’m up for the challenge and looking forward to working with my friend Scott (Dixon) and the whole Target team,” said Tagliani. “I’m thinking of Dario as everyone else is, and wishing him a quick recovery. This team has a championship on the line and I’m ready to step in a help them win it.”

Franchitti suffered a concussion, two spinal fractures and a fractured right ankle in the violent last-lap crash.

“Obviously the situation is not ideal with Dario being unable to compete in Fontana. As we look to the season finale we needed a driver with experience and the ability to step in and get the job done in the No. 10 car, and Alex was a logical choice for us.”