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Ganassi development driver Kyffin Simpson gets IndyCar seat for 2024

by Ida Wood

Photo: Chris Owens

Chip Ganassi Racing’s development driver Kyffin Simpson has been handed an IndyCar seat by the team for 2024 after two seasons in Indy Nxt.

In that time the 18-year-old Barbados-born Cayman Islands resident has claimed one pole position and two podiums, coming ninth in the standings in his rookie campaign and 10th this year.

Since May 2022 he has been supported by Ganassi, and before that was in was in Honda Performance Development’s GT3 academy programme. That could have led to a professional single-seater drive when he was just 17, as winning the 2021 Formula Regional Americas title earned him a scholarship from HDP (which he turned down) to step up to Super Formula.

Ganassi have had to add another car to incorporate Simpson into their line-up for 2024, with the team’s two champions Scott Dixon and Alex Palou being joined by Marcus Armstrong, who raced for Ganassi part-time this year but will be full-time for his sophomore season, as well as rookies Linus Lundqvist and Simpson.

“It’s been incredible working with Chip Ganassi Racing as their development driver over the last couple years and I’ve been able to learn so much. I am very excited to be making the next step to IndyCar with this team,” said Simpson, who first tested an Indy car with Ganassi at Sebring this January.

“I had a great time at the test and I can’t wait to get back in the car. It’s been my dream to race in the IndyCar series and it’s an honour to make it happen now with one of the best teams in the series. I’m really looking forward to working more closely with the entire team and the drivers.”

This year Simpson has also been racing in LMP2 prototype sportscars, winning the Four Hours of Dubai and the Four Hours of Le Castellet, as well as taking the class win and coming third overall in the Sebring 12 Hours.

He has represented Barbados and the Cayman Islands through his racing career, and it has not been confirmed which flag he will race under in IndyCar.

“We welcome Kyffin as a teammate to our IndyCar programme. He has been integrated into a Chip Ganassi Racing multi-year defined development programme which now provides the opportunity at open-wheel’s highest level,” said the team’s managing director Mike Hull. “He has already tested an Indy car with more to follow as an Indy Nxt graduate.”