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Scuderia Corsa, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Team to Enter Servia in Indy 500

Another sports car team with a championship pedigree will make its Verizon IndyCar Series debut in the Indianapolis 500.

Scuderia Corsa, owner of victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and 12 Hours of Sebring as well as three consecutive championships in IMSA’s GT Daytona class, is partnering with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing to enter veteran driver Oriol Servia in the 102nd Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil this May.

Servia, with 201 career Indy car starts including nine in the Indianapolis 500, will drive the No. 64 Honda as a teammate to RLL’s full-season drivers, Graham Rahal and reigning Indy 500 champion Takuma Sato.

“It is an honor to compete at ‘The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,’” Giacomo Mattioli, owner of Scuderia Corsa, said in a released statement. “To be a part of this great racing heritage and tradition is something I always envisioned for Scuderia Corsa and running across the yard of the bricks this year is a thrill.   

“I am excited to be partnering with Bobby Rahal and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, such an outstanding and established team, as well as having veteran (Verizon) IndyCar Series driver Oriol Servia onboard.”

Servia’s best Indy 500 finish to date was fourth place for Panther/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing in 2012. He finished 21st in last year’s race, his fourth with RLL.

“As you can imagine, I'm very excited first to be at the 500,” said the 43-year-old who was married and became a first-time father in 2017. “If you remember last year's race, we were running really strong until it came to an abrupt end with 10 laps to go.”

Servia, whose lone Indy car win came at Montreal in 2005, is confident the pairing of successful teams will bode well for him this year.

“We needed another party to ensure we're going to win,” he said. “Obviously both teams are very successful, winning teams. I couldn't be happier that they agreed. When you put two teams together, you never know how it's going to come out. They both saw the advantage of taking this shot together, with our friends at Honda supporting, too. I couldn't be happier.”

Stefan Johansson, the retired Indy car and Formula 1 driver, is sporting director for Scuderia Corsa. Attending the news conference in Mattioli’s absence, Johansson said this year’s Indy 500 is a chance for the team to get its feet wet in the Verizon IndyCar Series.

“I'm speaking on behalf of Giacomo now because he's the owner of the team,” Johansson said, “but his ambition has always been to progress the team into other areas than just the IMSA series. I think this is a very natural progression for that ambition, basically.

“INDYCAR has got great momentum at the moment. I think the timing is great. Obviously what better place to start than the Indy 500? I mean, it's the biggest race in the world. It's a great place to put the team on the map, on a much larger scale than what we do right now.”

Bobby Rahal, the 1986 Indy 500 winner and co-owner of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, sees the partnership as a win-win-win situation – that hopefully results in a win on May 27.

“I think it's really kind of a great coming together of three very powerful forces,” Rahal said. “I've gotten to know Giacomo over the last year or so in our participation in the IMSA series. They've been very, very successful with Ferrari in not just IMSA but in the (World Endurance Championship) in Europe and what have you.

“I've known Stefan for many years – raced against each other in Europe back in the good old days – so it was great having Stefan's support to put this together as well. Then, of course, bringing Oriol back with us yet again. … I look at Oriol being a part of the team as his really being able to contribute to refining the car, really creating great setup. 

“Now this year with Takuma and Graham, we have three very, very strong entries in the 500, three strong chances to win. That certainly is exciting.”

Practice for the 102nd Indianapolis 500 begins on Tuesday, May 15. Two days of qualifications take place May 19 and 20. Coverage of the race commences at 11 a.m. ET Sunday, May 27 on ABC and the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network. Ticket information is available at IMS.com.



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