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IndyCar: Andretti adds fifth car for GP of Indy for Franck Montagny

Apr 23, 2014, 10:18 AM EDT

Andretti Autosport driver Carlos Munoz of Colombia drives practice laps on the second day of qualifications in Indianapolis Reuters

File this one into the “Lucas Luhr to Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing out-of-left-field” style of Verizon IndyCar Series announcements.

Andretti Autosport, which is ramping up for a fairly big month of May anyway with a fifth car for Kurt Busch to join its usual four in the Indianapolis 500, and also has entries in Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tire, Pro Mazda Presented by Cooper Tire and Red Bull Global Rallycross, will run the fifth IndyCar at the May 8-10 Grand Prix of Indianapolis for Frenchman Franck Montagny.

Commercial partners were not announced for the No. 26 Honda, but this does mark a reunion between Montagny, Andretti Autosport and HPD.

Montagny has made two career North American open-wheel starts. He finished second in the April 2008 Champ Car series finale at Long Beach, and made a one-off start for Andretti, in an AFS partnership, in the team’s fifth car at the 2009 race in Sonoma.

He’s also worked with the team in sports cars, when Andretti ran the Acura ARX-01b in 2008. Montagny has 12 career starts in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, most recently in 2012 with OAK Racing, after the Peugeot factory team withdrew prior to the start of that season.

“I am very happy to be back with Andretti Autosport; I have already felt ‘at home’ during my visits,” Montagny commented. “Participating in the Grand Prix of Indianapolis in the temple of motorsport that is the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is a true moment of happiness.”

The addition brings the GP of Indy car count up to 25, with second cars at Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (Oriol Servia) and A.J. Foyt Racing (Martin Plowman) entered to join the full-season 22.

Andretti’s fifth car finished second in the 2013 Indianapolis 500 with rookie Carlos Munoz (pictured right).

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