With its all-new driver line-up of Indy Lights championship runner-up David Malukas in the No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports Honda, and two-time Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato in the No. 51 DCR with Rick Ware Racing Honda, the Illinois-based team enters the new NTT IndyCar Season with major changes to process.
As Romain Grosjean and his race engineer Olivier Boisson left for Andretti Autosport, DCR entered the offseason with two seats and one key timing stand position to fill. As the team prepares for its last pre-season test, the No. 18 entry has been solidified with rising race engineering talent Ross Bunnell attached to Malukas for his rookie campaign.
“Ross is going to be with David, and they’ve struck a pretty nice accord,” DCR team manager Terry Brown told RACER. “David is already very good, and Ross has been borderline genius, so we’re cautiously optimistic for what we’ve got there.”
Brown wasn’t prepared to say who will engineer the No. 51 Honda, but it’s believed team veteran Don Bricker is a leading candidate for Sato’s car. Bricker has served as an assistant race engineer with the team when it fields two cars and was tasked with running the third – he was Cody Ware’s race engineer last year – when the No. 52 DCRwRWR Honda appeared.