By: Tanner Watkins
October 8, 2019 | 1:00 PM
The NTT IndyCar Series grid will retain a rookie from the 2019 class – pairing him up with Scott Dixon and Felix Rosenqvist in a triple-headed Chip Ganassi Racing stable for next year. In an announcement made this afternoon, Ganassi has signed Marcus Ericsson to drive the No. 8 Honda in 2020.
Ericsson, who picked up a podium finish at Detroit and finished 88.5% of the laps during his rookie campaign this year, comes over from Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports.
“First of all, I’m extremely happy and proud to get the opportunity to join Chip Ganassi Racing,” said Ericsson, who joins fellow countryman Felix Rosenqvist as second-year Swedes on the team.
“It’s a team of winners and their history speaks for itself. I’m very thankful that they believe in me and I will do everything I can to make 2020 another successful year for the team. I’m also very excited to work with two of the best drivers in the series in Scott and Felix.
“I’m looking forward to putting what I’ve learned this year to use in my second year in the NTT IndyCar Series.”
Before racing in IndyCar this past season, Ericsson tallied 97 starts across five seasons in Formula One. As a junior driver, we won championships in Formula BMW UK (2007) and Japanese Formula Three (2009) while winning the Swedish Junior Racer of the Year in both of those campaigns.
Ericsson also has experience in British Formula Three, GP2 Asia, and GP3. In the 2019 IndyCar season, Ericsson led six laps (Detroit, Texas and Gateway) while posting three top-10 finishes. One of those was a runner-up result in the second Detroit race, and Ganassi sees potential in his IndyCar future.
“I think Marcus brings a lot of unique experience with him having competed in several championships around the world,” said team owner Chip Ganassi.
“When you have someone with that type of background, it gives him other points of reference that help his ability to develop and add to the overall racing program. We’re looking forward to seeing what Marcus can do alongside Scott and Felix.”
In regards to the health of the NTT IndyCar Series, it is always a positive to see the grid grow. When Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports moved into a partnership with McLaren Racing, it appeared that Ericsson would be the odd man out – while the grid wouldn’t be expanding at all despite bringing in McLaren.
Now, McLaren and Ericsson are both in the series for 2020, and the grid grows by one with Ganassi adding a third car – the first time they have run more than two cars since 2017.
Ericsson joins a Ganassi team that saw Dixon finish fourth in the championship this year, while fellow rookie Rosenqvist placed sixth overall and won the Rookie of the Year award.
Header image by Chris Owens/INDYCAR.