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VeeKay insists he is “loyal” to ECR, however exploring choices for 2025 and past

Count Rinus VeeKay among the shortlist of talented drivers in the IndyCar Series without definite plans for 2025. The 23-year-old Dutchman is in the final year of his contract with Ed Carpenter Racing (ECR), the only team he has called home since jumping into North America’s premier open-wheel championship in 2020. The early part of

VeeKay insists he is “loyal” to ECR, however exploring choices for 2025 and past

Rely Rinus VeeKay among the many shortlist of proficient drivers within the IndyCar Collection with out particular plans for 2025.

The 23-year-old Dutchman is within the remaining yr of his contract with Ed Carpenter Racing (ECR), the one workforce he has known as house since leaping into North America’s premier open-wheel championship in 2020.

The early a part of their relationship collectively appeared to indicate promise, with VeeKay scoring the only profession win on the Indianapolis Highway Course in 2021, which was solely his nineteenth begin. Sturdy outcomes, nevertheless, have been a battle as a regression has been in play ever since.

Final yr solely featured two top-10s, together with a greatest end of sixth at Portland. Whereas the flashes of improved tempo – and VeeKay has taken on extra of a management position – have been on show this yr, it has nonetheless been powerful sledding as one of the best outcome up to now was an eighth within the season-opening spherical on the Streets of St. Petersburg.  

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With VeeKay within the midst of a contract yr, and this previous week that includes one domino falling as Arrow McLaren introduced a mutual parting of how with Alexander Rossi and changing him with present Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing driver Christian Lundgaard for 2025, the query was posed in a Friday media availability to Veekay on the place issues stand with him past this season.

“I’m going to be a free agent on the finish of the yr,” VeeKay stated.  “I’m coming to the tip of my contract.

“It’s all the time a bit fascinating, I really feel like I’m off sequence with a lot of the subject this yr with driver contracts and when issues open up.

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“To me, nothing adjustments. I would like to indicate tempo and outcomes. We haven’t actually had the luck this yr. I’m in the identical scenario I’ve been in for the final 5 seasons.  

“I wish to present one of the best of myself. I all the time prefer to deal with driving. I’ve been in just a few contract years, free agent years, I all the time really feel prefer it makes me sharper as a result of I really want to indicate myself.

“I really want to indicate what I’m able to. It offers me another excuse to focus extra and actually anticipate probably the most out of myself and the workforce.”

Rinus VeeKay, Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet

Rinus VeeKay, Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet

Picture by: Geoffrey M. Miller / Motorsport Images

Contemplating how lengthy he has been with ECR, would he favor a change of surroundings with a brand new alternative versus returning and persevering with to try to elevate the workforce from its present depths?

“I must look it up,” VeeKay stated. “I’m a loyal driver to the workforce.

“I feel we’ve helped one another in each methods in each instructions. In fact, I’m exploring what I can do throughout the workforce and what my choices are for subsequent yr additionally.

“I would like to have a look at the choices on the surface to see if my profession can progress at a faster fee in some way; in fact that’s what each driver would do. It feels late into the season with some dominos falling proper now, however nonetheless it’s fairly early.

“All I can do proper now’s to indicate one of the best I can do with the automobile and that’ll assist me (and) it’ll assist the workforce. And in a while I’ll see what the choices are later this season.”

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Rinus VeeKay, Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet

Rinus VeeKay, Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet

Picture by: Brett Farmer / Motorsport Images

VeeKay additionally acknowledged the positive factors made by the workforce this yr, however famous how the outcomes haven’t supplied something deserving to match the pace.

“I imply, we’ve had rather a lot higher tempo than final yr, I really feel like, with race tempo,” VeeKay stated. “We’ve simply been so unfortunate.

“We’ve had a variety of mechanicals. Final (race) weekend, we had a gearbox fail and the weekend earlier than we had a left-front suspension fail at Highway America. So, we’ve had one thing happening every time, which more often than not has been out of the workforce’s fingers; racing automobiles break generally. In order that’s been unfortunate.

“I really feel like that is actually a midway a part of the season, normally you see drivers worsen all through the season from this race on, particularly with the hybrid… I feel we have now the tempo and the information proper now to be across the prime 10 extra usually and transfer up within the championship.”

Whereas VeeKay presently sits seventeenth within the championship standings with two top-10s, the No. 21 entry he drives is 18th (with the No. 6 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet’s driver rotation outcomes slotting it larger), which he famous is considerably decrease than at some other level throughout his tenure with ECR.

“I feel the automobile, the entry, is now 18th within the championship; that’s in all probability the worst we’ve ever been,” stated VeeKay, who has a greatest championship end of twelfth (twice – 2021, 2022).

“Velocity-wise we’re good, however results-wise, we actually want to maximise these races.”

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