IndyCar

Paretta reiterates intention to run a full-time IndyCar team

The team has confirmed that Simona De Silvestro will return to action for Paretta Autosport at three rounds this year – Road America in June, followed by Mid-Ohio in July and Nashville in August.

Paretta explained that the #16 entry, which made its debut in last year’s Indianapolis 500, was never going to be re-entered at the Memorial Day Weekend classic at the exclusion of the other events.

Given that new technical partner Ed Carpenter Racing is already running three cars at Indy, but only two at the road and street course races, it made sense to work together at events where there would be greater human resources.

“If we were going to do the 500, it was not just the 500,” said Paretta. “In talking to Ed, obviously knowing where is the constraint? We know there’s some challenges with how many people are available, how many cars are available.

“I said, ‘OK, let’s look at an alternate way to do this.’ Honestly, it was a conversation with some of the folks at Chevrolet. I said, This is what I’m thinking of doing, but I’m not sure what is the best.’ They said, ‘We really think Ed Carpenter would be a great partner for you. 

“As we said last year our intention is to grow to be a full-time team. We’re excited about these partnerships that are going to allow us to do that. This pivot and what we’re doing for 2022 is an investment in our future.”

Paretta explained the team’s absence from the 500, adding: “What we’re doing is growth for my team. It’s getting women and Simona to new places. If our intention is to be a full-time team, this is a better investment in us.”

Simona De Silvestro, Paretta Autosport Chevrolet

Simona De Silvestro, Paretta Autosport Chevrolet

Photo by: Phillip Abbott / Motorsport Images

Last year’s entry in the 500 saw Team Penske building and prepping the Dallara chassis for the new squad, as well as helping to train and guide Paretta’s employees, many of whom were newcomers to the IndyCar scene.

Despite the switch to Carpenter’s team which will “support us with technical knowledge, race operation support and added manpower,” Penske will remain involved with the entry.

“One thing that Team Penske is doing very graciously because it’s part of the Race for Equality and Change, the women we hired, many of them live near Team Penske in Mooresville,” said Paretta. “They are going to go through some pit training there because it’s easier, they can do a couple weeks of it to get their legs back under them…

“As a reminder, last year the women we hired for our pit crew… they had never pitted an IndyCar before. From February 1st to the end of May they learned from scratch. If you look to see the pitstops, they pitted a car cleanly in the Indy 500. They did that all by being trained by Shaun Rinaman and the team at Team Penske.”

Simona De Silvestro, Paretta Autosport Chevrolet

Simona De Silvestro, Paretta Autosport Chevrolet

Photo by: Barry Cantrell / Motorsport Images

The team’s driver De Silvestro believes the new venture with ECR is a positive step to fulfil the operation’s full-time goals.   

“We’re really hoping to grow with Ed Carpenter Racing. It’s definitely the way to have a full-time seat,” said De Silvestro.

“Personally, I think it’s amazing the places we’re going back to. They’re tracks that I’ve been quite quick at in the past.

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“I’m super motivated, looking forward to work with everyone at Ed Carpenter Racing, having some pretty good teammates there. I think we can really push each other… I think it’s really an important step for us to grow this team and get it in the right direction.”

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