Apr 30, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT
The Indianapolis 500 confirmed driver/car count has grown by one, as Pippa Mann confirmed she will attempt to qualify for this year’s race with Dale Coyne Racing.
Mann, who qualified for her only prior 500 appearance in 2011, joins the DCR team as a third driver alongside teammates Justin Wilson and Ana Beatriz.
“I’m delighted to be able to share this news!” she said in a release. “I actually first met Dale several years ago, before I came to the U.S., at what turned out to be the final Champ Car test at Sebring right before the open wheel merger. We’ve sort of had an on-going conversation ever since then, and I actually got very close to getting in one of Dale’s cars on Bump Day last year. A year later, we’ve now put this program together, and I cannot wait to be back on track with Honda and running at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May.”
Coyne, an IndyCar team owner for 30 years but notorious for his delays in making driver announcements, weighed in on the move.
“We have known and followed Pippa from her first interest in coming over to America and the IndyCar series,” Coyne said. “Her hard work and dedication are commendable and have shown results. She has qualified for Indy, qualified on pole at Indianapolis for the Indy Lights race, won an Indy Lights race at Kentucky and has been a great asset for the sport.”
Further details to the entry – car number, sponsors and notable crewmembers – will be announced at a later date.
The confirmation brings the number of driver/car combinations to 31 for this year’s race, with two more to go before a full field of 33 is achieved.