Aug 30, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; IndyCar Series driver James Jakes during practice for the Grand Prix of Baltimore through the streets of Baltimore. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports
Upside: Jakes will be one of Coletti’s rivals for the KV seat, also testing there this week. With IndyCar experience, Jakes has some advantages. He even stood on the podium in one of 2013’s Detroit rounds. Jakes experienced moderate success in European leagues prior to joining the IndyCar tour, and familial money through Acorn Stairlifts means Jakes can ease the sponsorship burdens many teams face.
Questions: Jakes sat out in 2014, and his inconsistent results left much to be desired. Five top 10s in 50 races is hardly a great record.
Verdict: He will be a factor for the KV ride, but all else equal, not the leader. Jakes needs to make sure his backing exceeds that of others to ensure a place in 2015.