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Siegel replaces Canapino at Juncos for Road America

Written by Archie O’Reilly

Juncos Hollinger Racing have announced that Indy NXT sophomore Nolan Siegel will deputise for Agustin Canapino in the No.78 Chevy at Road America, running in IndyCar alongside his Indy NXT race weekend.

Canapino has taken an “leave of absence” for the weekend. 

This comes one day on from Arrow McLaren announcing that they have ended their commercial alliance with Juncos in the wake of abuse and death threats directed at the driver of their No.6 Chevy, Theo Pourchaire, from fans of Canapino. This followed a largely inconsequential collision between the pair during the Detroit Grand Prix.

“The growth of online abuse and harassment resulting from the events of this week have led to a very difficult experience for Agustin, the team and the entire IndyCar fan base,” the team’s statement reads. “The safety of Agustin and the rest of the competitors has to be considered first and foremost. 

“Abuse, hatred, and harassment in any form is a detriment to this sport, and we must prioritise the mental and physical wellbeing of both our drivers and our competition.”

Canapino’s conduct has come into question in the wake of statements from both Arrow McLaren and Juncos condemning the abuse. His own statement appeared to deny the existence of the death threats that Pourchaire has received and he has since liked tweets appearing to mock threats towards Pourchaire and former teammate Callum Ilott.

“Online abuse is unacceptable and we need to ensure that our drivers are prepared both mentally and physically when they get in the car,” Brad Hollinger, co-owner of Juncos Hollinger Racing, said. “We are saddened by the events that led to this scenario.”

Siegel won two races in his rookie season in Indy NXT last year and sits third - where he finished last year - at present in 2024 after one win and two further podiums inside the first five races. He has already run two IndyCar races for Dale Coyne Racing this season, including the $1 Million Challenge exhibition event, and also attempted to qualify for the Indianapolis 500. 

He finished seventh in his heat race for the exhibition at the Thermal Club, only missing out on making the All-Star race by one position in an impressive display. Long Beach then saw him progress from 27th to 20th in his competitive debut.

The 19-year-old’s most recent outing in an Indy car was in his attempt to qualify for the Indy 500 last month, which ultimately came up short in the No.18 Honda for Coyne. Siegel crashed on Fast Friday and never quite built speed back up, valiantly exiting Last Chance Qualifying with another hit of the SAFER barrier as he attempted a brave last-gasp run.

He is also scheduled to run on the streets of Toronto with Coyne as part of his four-race deal with the team. Factoring in Road America with Juncos, he would be able to run one more IndyCar race this season while preserving rookie status ahead of a prospective full-time step up in 2025.

According to the NBC Sports broadcast, the decision for Siegel to run in the No.78 this weekend came only around 90 minutes before the start of opening practice. He parked his car early in Indy NXT practice in order to complete his fit into the Juncos car.


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