Dec 3, 2013, 11:00 AM EDT
With the IndyCar season in the books and a limited amount of news to come since the season finale at Fontana, my MotorSportsTalk colleague Chris Estrada and are taking a look back at the 2013 season just past. Chris and I each ranked our top 10 drivers and some of the biggest stories; now we take a look back at the field driver-by-driver.
In P22, driver of Car 22 before that went away, and best of the part-timers, Oriol Servia…
- Teams: Panther DRR, Panther Racing
- 2012: 13th Place, Best Finish 4th, Best Start 8th
- 2013: 22nd Place (12 Starts), Best Finish 4th, Best Start 7th, 1 Top-5, 4 Top-10, 16 Laps Led, 13.9 Avg. Start, 12.5 Avg. Finish
DiZinno says: Servia scored only three less points than Saavedra did, but in seven fewer starts, and that says it all really about who should have had a full season chance. Servia’s went away when the funding did at Panther DRR despite a strong five-race stretch to open the year; it’s easy to forget, but he was ninth in points leaving the Indianapolis 500. It made too much sense for him to move into Panther Racing proper after that, but logistics, contracts and questionable management decisions made that logic impossible. Still, Servia did what he could in the seven remaining races he drove for Panther. He remains IndyCar’s “ghost driver,” who stars for midfield teams before they run out of money, while only rarely being noticed by a TV camera.
Estrada says: One of the more reliable veterans in the IndyCar paddock, Servia is a driver whose skills demand a competitive full-time ride. Mechanical problems at St. Pete and early contact at Barber made for a slow start, but the Spaniard shook them off with a sixth at Long Beach and an impressive fourth at Sao Paulo. Unfortunately, his Panther DRR side could go no further following Indy and he moved over to Panther Racing for a part-time run of seven more races that, for various reasons, didn’t yield a lot of results. Nonetheless, he did a good job with the situations that he had to deal with in 2013.
- Experience trumps youth on IndyCar’s opening weekend with aero kits 1
- NHRA: Jack Beckman (54 races), Larry Morgan (120 races) snap lengthy winless streaks in 4-Wide Nationals 1
- Montoya’s evolution evident after statement victory in St. Pete 2
- Montoya ekes out win in St. Petersburg season opener 6
- Emotional Vettel revels in first victory for Ferrari 5
- Vettel claims shock win for Ferrari in Malaysia as Mercedes pays for strategy mistake 9
- NHRA: C. Force, Todd, McGaha and Arana Jr. qualify No. 1 for 4-Wide Nationals eliminations 0