Henry Malukas has turned his Midwestern business into a success by embracing expansion where the Henry Malukas Drivers trucking company has grown to have 800 employees.
The native of Lithuania, whose son David has become a breakout rookie talent in the NTT IndyCar Series, will apply the same expansion formula to Indy Lights where the six-car HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing team will return next season with eight cars run from five transporters.
The HMD team has received significant interest after asserting itself as the dominant force in Indy Lights this year with Sweden’s Linus Lundqvist, who aims to clinch to title during this weekend’s doubleheader season finale. With teammates Danial Frost and Benjamin Pedersen, the team has won seven of 12 races held so far.
With the move to eight Dallara IL15-AERs, it’s believed to be the largest assembly of entries from a single team in Road to Indy history.
“We like to beat the records,” Malukas told RACER.
HMD Motorsports general Mike Maurini pointed to the upcoming change from Cooper Tires to Firestone in Indy Lights as another reason to take on more cars.
“I think eight drivers on Firestone tires and the limited testing that we’re going to have, it’s probably going to be an advantage to have more drivers, more engineers, more data,” he added.
Working from a collaborative approach with his racing employees, Malukas presented his team with the idea of running eight cars during last weekend’s race at Portland. The response was favorable.
“Like all decisions, we gather together and explain our plan,” he said. “Is everybody in, or not in? Because we could run two cars, four cars, six cars. We had this conversation in Portland that conversation about eight cars, and is everybody is in.”
To complement the team’s growth, a new 67,000 sq-ft shop is being built in Brownsburg, Indiana, as HMD onboards more crew members to properly staff the venture.
“We just literally we hired two engineers this morning and I know we’re down the road with a number of mechanics as well,” Maurini said. “I know that people were talking about having a problem finding people, but I think we’re having good luck with it based on success, and the way you get treated. Henry’s philosophy is completely different than maybe the way you get treated other places.”