May 27, 2011; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indy Light driver Conor Daly (77) races alongside Peter Dempsey (36) during the Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Daly joins strong Indy 500 field

Indycar fans have wished for a lot of things over the years and it seems for once we’re getting what we want. All indications are that this is going to be the most competitive Indy 500 since Jacques Villeneuve won in 1995, if not ever, and the field is just stacked with talented drivers.

Conor Daly announced that he secured a second ride with A.J. Foyt Enterprises. He joins A.J. Allmendinger and Carlos Munoz as additions to the full-time field at the Indy 500. So far that makes 28 confirmed entries and it’s only the first week of April.

If you’re not familiar with Conor Daly you really should be. Alongside with Alexander Rossi he’s America’s best shot at being the first Formula One driver since Scott Speed lost his ride in 2007. He’s the son of CART and F-1 driver Derek Daly. He’s probably the most talented driver to not have a full time ride for 2013, him and Brian Vickers really.

Daly made his GP2 debut at Sepang International Circuit and became the first American to score points in that series since 2004. He did so not with a top team, but with a rookie teem that confirmed him as their driver hours before the weekend started. He would have scored points in both races of the double header but received a drive-through penalty that seemed a little random. Daly was also fast during preseason testing for GP2, GP3, Force India’s F-1 car, and Indycar for Foyt. He also won a winter series in India that I’m not familiar with.

 

It’s beyond me why no team has picked him up. I guess since that he announced this his impressive ride with Himler Motorsports (It’s kinda weird that the owner shares his name with one of Hitler’s top supporters)  wasn’t enough to get a full season ride. The GP2 races at Monoco the same day as the Indy 500, and the Spanish Grand Prix overlaps with the opening of practice.

Okay, I know he doesn’t have a ride because he doesn’t have the $10 million that some drivers bring to a team. Still, Daly is fast, personable, writes an interesting column and seems like a piece that a team could build around. Given the choice between an Indycar ride and an Formula One ride I’m not sure which he’d choose, but hopefully a good run at Indy will give him the chance to choose.

Tags: A.J. Foyt Conor Daly Featuered Indy 500 IZOD IndyCar Series