Oliver Askew will not be back for what would have been a second year competing for Arrow McLaren SP in the 2021 IndyCar season.
Rookie Oliver Askew will not be back for a second year behind the wheel of the #7 Chevrolet for Arrow McLaren SP in the 2021 IndyCar season.
Askew has competed in 11 of the 13 races that have been contested so far this season, as he was forced to miss the doubleheader at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course earlier this month.
The 23-year-old Jupiter, Florida native had been experiencing concussion-like symptoms since his heavy crash in the Indy 500 on Sunday, August 23, and he reported “a balance and coordination issue” following the doubleheader at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in mid-September.
Should he be cleared by the IndyCar Medical Team to compete in the season finale on the streets of St. Peterburg on Sunday, October 25, he will be allowed to do so, but after that, he will no longer be a member of the team.
Here is what team co-owner Sam Schmidt had to say in a statement.
“We believe that Oliver has a great deal of talent and potential for the future. He has had an incredibly difficult rookie year, with a lack of overall track time and recent medical issues. We want to give Oliver the time to pursue new opportunities for 2021 and the ability to race at St. Pete. Coe the end of the year, we will wish Oliver the very best in all of his future endeavors and he will always be a friend of the team.”
Arrow McLaren SP have not yet confirmed the 2019 Indy Lights champion’s replacement behind the wheel of the #7 Chevrolet, but Helio Castroneves replaced him for both races of the doubleheader at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Pato O’Ward is set to return for a second season as the driver of the #5 Chevrolet next year.
Through 11 starts, Askew has recorded an average finish of 15.9 with three top 10 finishes. He finished in a career-high third place in the first race of the doubleheader at Iowa Speedway back in mid-July, which was just the fifth start of his career.
Following his most recent race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, he sat in 18th place in the championship standings, ahead of three other full-time drivers.