Mexican driver Juan Pablo Garcia will join Schmidt Peterson Motorsports for his third full-time season in the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires series in 2014 after showing good performances during 2013.
“Juan Pablo (Garcia) has been in Indy Lights for several seasons and I think now is the ideal time for him to join SPM,” said Sam Schmidt, Co-Owner of Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. “I have known and watched Juan Pablo ever since his first race with Michael Crawford, but those were only a few races at a time with no momentum to build on. Last season was the second year with a full program and he made tremendous progress, but he still didn’t have the benefit of a full-time teammate.”
“We believe he can be a consistent top-five finisher if we combine his experience, his desire to work hard and our program of multiple teammates and lots of information to work from. We want our eighth championship and fifth in a row! We know we have a big target on our back, so we must keep improving every year. We have an incredible group of individuals who truly work together as a team and always put winning first.”
Garcia, backed by sponsors International, Mapfre and AutoShow TV gave some comments: “I’m absolutely delighted to race for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports,” Garcia said. “It’s a very prestigious team in the Indy Lights series and they have always demonstrated that all their cars are always vying for podiums, victories and leading races and every year they win a championship. They have good drivers, a good team of engineering and crew and of course, great cars. It’s really hard to achieve that every single year.
“On the other hand, for the 2014 season the fact that I’ve already know all the tracks we are going to race, it’s going to be a good advantage. However, an important change for this year is going to be the tires. I hope knowing both the car and the tracks is going to be a competitive advantage, which is going to help me to adapt easily to the new Cooper tires.
“My goal is to be fighting for the championship this season. I am in a team that has opportunities at their disposal and has demonstrated what they can achieve. I’ve demonstrated too, that I have the speed to be competitive. Therefore, I anticipate that I will have all the necessary resources to be able to fight for wins. The fact that I will have teammates will be highly beneficial for all of us, as we can advance quickly with everybody testing different things.”
Garcia starts preseason testing with SPM Friday, Feb. 21 at NOLA Motorsports Park for the Cooper Tires Winterfest. For the latest team & driver updates, follow @SPMIndyCar & @juanprix on Twitter Juanprix on Instagram and http://www.facebook.com/JuanPabloGarcia76 on facebook.
About Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) was established in 2001 and is owned by former IndyCar driver Sam Schmidt and businessman Ric Peterson. Schmidt was paralyzed (quad) in 2000 after an accident during testing at Walt Disney World Speedway in Orlando, Fla. SPM fields cars in the IndyCar Series, including the Indianapolis 500, and Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires. SPM is the most successful team in Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires history with seven championships. In addition, SPM has qualified 14 cars in the Indianapolis 500 since 2001 and in 2011, won the coveted Indy 500 pole.