Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) announced today that Hy-Vee, Inc. – an employee-owned supermarket chain that operates more than 275 retail stores across eight Midwestern states – will be the primary sponsor of Graham Rahal’s NTT INDYCAR SERIES entry at Road America (June 20) and World Wide Technology Raceway (August 21) as well as the primary sponsor of the No. 45 entry for Santino Ferrucci for the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500 (May 30). In addition, Hy-Vee will be a full-season associate sponsor on Rahal’s car.
Hy-Vee first joined the team as the primary sponsor of Graham Rahal’s entry for Race 2 at the Iowa Speedway in 2020 where he finished third. The company was also the primary sponsor of the team’s entry for Spencer Pigot at the Indy 500 and an associate sponsor of Rahal’s entry for the legendary race.
After two full INDYCAR SERIES seasons in 2019-2020 and a partial one in 2018, Ferrucci will join RLL for the Indy 500, where he has been a contender for victory. He was named Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year in 2019 after a seventh-place finish, and he finished fourth to race winner Takuma Sato and third place finisher Graham Rahal in 2020. To date, his best Indy car start is second place at Mid-Ohio (Race 2) in 2020 – he has finished in fourth place four times. In 2021, Ferrucci competes part-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving for Sam Hunt Racing. He will join Rahal and Sato at an open test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, April 8-9.
So, how good can this get next month? RLL has 3 of the top 4 finishers now from last years race including retaining two of their own.
Ferrucci has vastly improved each year and is going from 7th to 4th to…1st?
It’s not unrealistic to think. This car has been fast over the years including Spencer Pigot qualifying it 12th a year ago.
The toughest challenge is going to be that we’ve not had a one off Indy winner since Dan Wheldon’s miraculous triumph in 2011. The last time before that was Helio Castroneves’ win in 2001. Helio did race in Phoenix that year but that was it.
The good thing is, trends say we will again this year though. 2001, 2011…2021?
Numbers are aligning for Ferrucci.