Robin Miller was hinting this early in 2009. We heard more rumors about it when Gil de Ferran said he was starting an Indy program. But now we have new word from John Oreovicz at ESPN that Takuma is joined at the hip with Gil’s new Indy effort.
Clearly, this still stands as a rumor though since this comprised one line in John’s article. But it doesn’t take much to get me excited about the prospect of Sato taking to the grid in an IndyCar. Takuma showed a very aggressive driving style in F1, which should make him about as likable as EJ Viso was in 2008. But that would make him one of the guys that you wouldn’t want to take your eyes off of during a race.
At this point, we are still waiting for confirmation that Gil will actually be bringing an effort to IndyCar. He first announced that he would have a 2 car team, along with his ALMS team. But it was recently announced that Gil would no longer be getting any HPD money for an Acura program in ALMS, so the sportscar operation is now done. Further, rumors from the IndyCar series have Gil running a 2 car effort in conjunction with Vision racing, since they both seem to be struggling to find sponsorship.
Honda has wanted to do something with Takuma since the Super Aguri F1 team was forced to close its doors 2 years ago, leaving the Japanese pilot without a race seat. The rumor that Takuma was heading to IndyCar died down a bit this summer though since there will be 4 new teams in F1 this coming season and Takuma was hoping to get one of those race seats, but apparently he was unable to raise the funds necessary to gain interest from the Cosworth end of the F1 grid.
If Takuma does end up with de Ferran, it will most likely be in some way associated with Honda money. de Ferran is a bit of a favorite son to the Honda brass and they may be looking to give back to him since they took away the HPD money from his Acura program. Along with that, Honda may also be looking to regain their honor by finally placing the jilted Super Aguri driver with a race seat.