Coyne targets Rahal to replace Wilson
|By Simon Strang
||Wednesday, February 3rd 2010, 08:52 GMT
Dale Coyne has named Graham Rahal as a key target to replace Justin Wilson in his IndyCar squad, following the Briton's switch to Dreyer & Reinbold Racing for 2010.
Rahal, who is currently out of contract, has raced for Newman Haas Lanigan Racing for the past three seasons, winning on his second IndyCar start in 2008 St. Petersburg round.
"Obviously Graham Rahal would be our first candidate, for both his speed and the image we'd want to portray for the #19 car," Coyne told Racer magazine's website. "Graham's a proven winner who matured a lot as team leader at Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing last year."
Coyne also singled out rising US single seater star J.R. Hildebrand, who tested for the Force India Formula 1 team at the end of last year, as another potential signing.
"He's Indy Lights champ, and I know he'd shine in the big cars," said Coyne. "If [Atlantic Series champion] John Edwards or [runner-up] Jonathan Summerton had Indy Lights - particularly, oval - experience, I'd add them to the list."
Coyne added that he had no hard feelings about Wilson's switch to Dreyer & Reinbold, despite the former F1 driver giving his team its first victory in IndyCars at Watkins Glen last summer.
"Of course, I'm also sorry to lose Justin. Last year's race at Watkins Glen was unforgettable, and I want to thank him for making Dale Coyne Racing one of only three teams to score a win in the IZOD IndyCar Series," he said. "You never forget your first time, right?!"