Notes: NTT DATA returns with Kanaan in 10 car


Global IT services provider NTT DATA has renewed its partnership with Chip Ganassi Racing Teams to be the primary sponsor of the No. 10 NTT DATA Chevrolet driven by Tony Kanaan for the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season.

NTT DATA began its relationship with the team for the 2013 Indianapolis 500 and became the primary sponsor of the No. 8 car for the 2014 season. In 2015, Kanaan drove the No. 10 NTT DATA entry to three podium finishes and seventh place in the Verizon IndyCar Series championship.

NTT Data, with U.S. headquarters in Plano, Texas, is the official IT services partner to Chip Ganassi Racing Teams.

“NTT DATA has been an integral piece of our partnership group the last several years across a number of the touring series we compete in,” said Steve Lauletta, president of Chip Ganassi Racing Teams. “In addition, their continued support both on and off of the track in terms of our technical expertise allows us to operate at a very high level on race weekends and in our offices during the week.”

Kanaan, the 2004 Verizon IndyCar Series champion and 2013 Indianapolis 500 winner, is the all-time Indy car leader in consecutive starts with 249. The 2016 season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg is March 13.

“2015 was kind of a roller coaster of a season with some really solid results throughout the year, but our top-five finish and (teammate Scott) Dixon’s championship in Sonoma was a really positive way to go into the offseason for the whole team,” said Kanaan, who has 17 victories and 15 poles in 310 Indy car races dating to 1998.

“I’ve worked with some great people at NTT DATA over the past few years and I’ve been able to use their strengths and assets to better myself as a driver, and being able to do that has just made our partnership that much stronger.”

Four drivers selected for USF2000 test

The Mazda Road to Indy and MAXSpeed Group announced four winners of the Driver Advancement Program, which recognizes karting competitors.

Trenton Estep, 15, of San Antonio, Texas; Kyle Kirkwood, 16, of Jupiter, Fla.; Luke Shanahan, 17, of Dallas; and Rinus Van Kalmthout, 15, of Hoofddorp, Netherlands, will have the opportunity to test in Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda cars during the offseason.

Of note

Team USA Scholarship drivers Dakota Dickerson, 18, of San Diego, and Michai Stephens, 23, from Evanston, Ill., competed in the 15th Walter Hayes Trophy Formula Ford event last weekend at the Silverstone circuit in England.

The duo competed the previous weekend in the 44th Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch in England.

From the fans