By: Tanner Watkins
February 5, 2020 | 10:00 AM
While it may not be the Indianapolis 500, Scott McLaughlin will get a taste of May this spring. Team Penske has hired the talented wheelman to drive the No. 2 Chevrolet at the GMR Grand Prix on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on May 9.
McLaughlin’s IndyCar debut will come after a well-received test session at Sebring International Raceway earlier this offseason and another test run at Circuit of the Americas this month.
“This is an amazing opportunity to race against some of the best open-wheel drivers in the world on one of the most historic tracks in motorsports,” said McLaughlin, the reigning Australian V8 SuperCars champion.
“I’m excited about the challenge of trying to win a third consecutive Supercars championship while helping to keep the Shell V-Power Racing Team at the front of the field this season. I’m also really looking forward to this new opportunity. It’s a driver’s dream to get a chance to race an Indy car for Team Penske.
“With the experience, I gained at the test in Sebring, I know a little bit more about what to expect when I get back into the car at COTA. I just want to learn as much as I can every time I’m in the car so I can make the most of the opportunity to race with the team at the Grand Prix in Indianapolis.”
An interesting twist to the story is that McLaughlin will take over the No. 2 machine for Team Penske in these scheduled sessions as Josef Newgarden moves to the No. 1 – the designation for the defending NTT IndyCar Series champion.
McLaughlin, 26, joins a Team Penske squad who has taken home wins on the IMS road course in each of the last five years – three times with Will Power and twice with Simon Pagenaud. Team owner Roger Penske hopes that McLaughlin can hit the ground running and continue the positive momentum in his first start.
“Scott has experienced tremendous success in Supercars over the last three seasons with DJR Team Penske and we believe his talent and his drive will continue to shine behind the wheel of an Indy car,” Penske noted.
“It will be interesting to see how he continues to develop as we work up to his first race at the Indianapolis Grand Prix. We know Scott will work hard to improve with every lap and he will represent Team Penske well as he gets acclimated to the IndyCar Series.”
Header image by IndyCar Media.