Ed Carpenter Racing announced that Rinus VeeKay has signed a multi-year contract extension to return as the driver of ECR’s No. 21 Dallara-Chevrolet in the NTT IndyCar Series, beginning in 2023.
The 21-year-old VeeKay from Hoofddorp, Netherlands, is currently campaigning in his third full-time season in the IndyCar circuit, all with ECR, where he is ranked in 11th place in the drivers’ standings on a strength of a single podium result after finishing third at Barber Motorsports Park from pole position in May and a total of six top-10 results.
“I am very excited to continue with Ed Carpenter Racing for what will be my fourth year in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES,” VeeKay said. “Ed Carpenter gave me the opportunity to drive for the team when I came out of Indy Lights and has let me showcase my talents in an Indy car ever since. The continuity at ECR is great. There have barely been any changes in my time here, and it’s very nice to have the same group of people around me all the time. We have been stepping up our game every season, and with the support of Todd Ault and BitNile, we can really move forward as we head into 2023.”
VeeKay, whose racing career started with karts, made his inaugural presence in the IndyCar circuit at the start of the 2020 season when he was signed by Ed Carpenter Racing to pilot the No. 21 Chevrolet. By then, he was the 2018 champion of the F3 Asian Winter Series, the reigning Pro Mazda champion and runner-up in the 2019 Indy Lights championship standings.
In his first full-time campaign in the IndyCar Series, VeeKay achieved his maiden podium after finishing third in the first of an IndyCar Harvest GP doubleheader weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course in October as he went on to capture the 2020 IndyCar Rookie-of-the-Year title. Five events into the 2021 season, he notched his first IndyCar career victory in the GMR Grand Prix on Indy’s road course in May. To go along with a runner-up result in first of a Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix doubleheader feature on The Raceway at Belle Isle, Michigan, in June, he went on to finish 12th in the final standings, two spots better than 2020 (14th).
Through 42 previous starts in the IndyCar Series, VeeKay has achieved a single victory, two poles, four podiums, 180 laps led and an average-finishing result of 13.3.
“I am so happy to be able to extend our relationship with Rinus,” Ed Carpenter, ECR team owner, added. “He is an extremely versatile and talented driver. It has been and remains our hope to build our team to new heights with Rinus helping lead the charge. Our goals and expectations are to win races and to compete for championships. With Rinus’s growth and the support from BitNile and Todd Ault, we are primed for success.”
With his plans for the future set, VeeKay is set to compete in the upcoming Big Machine Music City Grand Prix at Nashville Street Circuit on Sunday, August 7, with the event’s coverage scheduled to commence at 3 p.m. ET on NBC.