Written By Hugh Waring, edited by Janvi Unni
Image: Penske Entertainment
Ed Carpenter Racing (ECR) announced that accomplished IndyCar driver Conor Daly has officially ended his partnership with the team. Daly's final race in the No. 20 Chevrolet took place at the Detroit Grand Prix last weekend. ECR intends to introduce a new driver to join Rinus VeeKay at Road America later this month, although the driver's identity has not yet been disclosed.
Team owner Ed Carpenter expressed the difficulty of the decision, acknowledging Daly's significance in the world of IndyCar racing. Carpenter stated, "This is the most difficult decision I have made as a team owner because I respect Conor and know what he means to IndyCar and its fans." He further explained that despite making technical changes and investments during the offseason, the team has faced significant challenges in the 2023 season. Carpenter expressed a commitment to improving the team's competitiveness and thanked Daly for his contributions. He concluded by wishing Daly continued success and offered support for his future endeavours.
Daly, who began his IndyCar career in 2013, joined ECR on a part-time basis in 2020 and transitioned to a full-time role with sponsorship from BitNile in 2022. In his first full season with ECR, Daly finished 17th in the championship standings, with his best result being a fifth-place finish at the May edition of the Indianapolis Grand Prix.
Currently occupying the 20th position in the drivers' standings, the Indiana native achieved his highest result of the 2023 season with an eighth-place finish at the recent Indianapolis 500.
Reflecting on the split, Daly expressed gratitude to ECR for their collaboration over the past three and a half seasons. He stated, "Although we've mutually decided that it's in our best interests to take different paths, I'd like to thank ECR for the past three and a half seasons." Daly extended his appreciation to everyone who has supported him throughout his career and expressed excitement about the future opportunities that lie ahead. He concluded by thanking his fans for their unwavering support during his time with ECR.
ECR confirmed that the No. 20 Chevrolet will continue as a full-time entry, unaffected by Daly's departure. Additionally, the team stated that the full-time program for No. 21 and the ovals-only program for the No. 33 remain unchanged.