Takuma Sato Returning To RLL Racing In 2018

RaceChaser Staff Featured, Verizon IndyCar Series 0 Comments

Takuma Sato will return to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing for the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season. (IndyCar photo)

BROWNSBURG, Ind. – Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing announced Wednesday that reigning Indianapolis 500 champion Takuma Sato will return to their Verizon IndyCar Series team in 2018.

Sato previously drove for the team in 2012, where he famously dueled eventual winner Dario Franchitti on the final lap before crashing in Turn 1.

“I’m excited about having Taku back with us,” said co-owner Bobby Rahal. “I have such admiration for his spirit and how he approaches everything and was so happy for him when he won the Indy 500 this year.  The chance to bring him back to the team was too good to pass up.”

“I am extremely happy to be back with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing,” said Sato, who drove for Andretti Autosport this season en route to his Indy 500 victory. “Bobby, Dave and Mike have always been very supportive of me. The team has been ultra-competitive the past few seasons. I can’t wait to be a part of it in 2018. I think we can achieve some great things together!”

The acquisition of Sato by RLLR means that the team will field two full-time entries next season, with Sato driving alongside Graham Rahal.

“He and Graham get along very well and we will have two strong cars that can win any race in 2018,” added Bobby Rahal. “I think that will give our team a great chance at being contenders in every race but it’s also going to give each of our drivers a chance to have their best years ever.  I’m excited about it and even though the 2017 season just concluded, I can’t wait for the 2018 season to start.”

Sato, a native of Tokyo, Japan, has made 135 starts in the IndyCar Series since his rookie season in 2010. His Indy car highlights include wins in the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 and the 2013 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, along with a total of six podium finishes. In addition, Sato has earned seven Indy car poles and led a total of 471 laps.

Prior to joining the IndyCar Series, Sato competed in 90 Formula One races between 2002 and 2008, with his highest finish of third coming at the 2003 United States Grand Prix.

While with RLL, Sato’s best finishes were third in Sao Paulo and second in Edmonton, which was his best series finish at the time.

CREDIT: Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 

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