Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) announced today a driver development program partnership with Indy Lights team Belardi Auto Racing. The No. 5 Arrow Electronics Indy Lights car driven by Santi Urrutia will match the No. 5 Arrow Electronics Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda driven by 2017 Grand Prix of Long Beach race winner James Hinchcliffe.
“This new program with Belardi Auto Racing is all about assisting young talented drivers any way we can to get them to the Verizon IndyCar Series,” commented SPM co-owner Sam Schmidt. “Santi did a great job for us in 2016, coming just one point shy of becoming an IndyCar driver this year. Brian Belardi has a great history of doing everything possible with talented drivers, like Gabby Chaves and Zach Veach, so we think this is a great fit. Arrow Electronics and their guests will now have another car to cheer for this season.”
“I’m very excited for this combined effort,” offered Brian Belardi. “I’m looking forward to the partnership with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and having the Arrow Electronics name on our No. 5 car. I believe this new collaboration is a great step forward for the Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires ladder program. I’m very proud with the fact that our former drivers like Gabby Chaves and Zach Veach will be in this year’s Indianapolis 500, and I know that this new driver development program will help graduate more of the Belardi family into the Verizon IndyCar Series.”
Urrutia and his No. 5 Arrow Electronics Belardi Auto Racing Indy Lights car will take the green flag at 3:00 p.m. ET on Saturday and 12:45 p.m. ET on Sunday for the Grand Prix of Alabama doubleheader at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, AL. Hinchcliffe and his signature black and gold Honda can be seen broadcast live on NBC Sports Network this Sunday at 3:00 p.m. ET for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama.