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Davison gets an IndyCar encore at Sonoma

Aug 20, 2013, 6:00 PM EST

James Davison AP

James Davison will make his second IZOD IndyCar Series start in as many races at Sonoma Raceway this weekend (Sunday, 4 p.m. EST, NBCSN). The Australian did a respectable job at Mid-Ohio a few weeks ago as he started 16th and finished 15th in Dale Coyne Racing’s second car.

Although Ryo Hirakawa, a 19-year-old Japanese Formula 3 driver, tested the car last week, Davison was available last minute for the race weekend itself.  One thing Davison will need is a new crash helmet; his did not pass INDYCAR regulations so he needed to borrow Ryan Briscoe’s at Mid-Ohio, as his countryman was still sidelined from injury.

“I’m excited to be back in the No. 18 car at Sonoma. Mid-Ohio was a solid debut that I came out of pleased and having learned a lot,” Davison told IndyCar.com. “With some experience now under my belt and added confidence that goes with it, I must aim to go another step forward this weekend. Finishing the race again will be most important.”

I saw Davison a couple weeks ago at the combined ALMS/GRAND-AM weekend at Road America, and he said at the time that a Sonoma drive was “possible.” So unlike Stefan Wilson, who will make his IndyCar debut in the car next weekend at Baltimore, Davison has more than one race with which to prove himself in an audition for future outings in 2014.

Davison is one of four part-timers in the 25-car Sonoma field, the others Briscoe at Panther Racing, the returning JR Hildebrand at Barracuda Racing and the debuting Lucas Luhr for RW/Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing.

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