Theo Pourchaire to make his IndyCar debut at Long Beach with Arrow McLaren

Photo Credit: Formula Motorsport Limited
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A new face will be on the grid for the upcoming Long Beach round. The young French driver, who is currently competing in Super Formula with Team Impul, will be behind the wheel of Arrow McLaren’s car no. 6.

Unfortunately, former Dale Coyne driver David Malukas will still have to wait to make his race weekend debut as a Papaya driver. The young American-Lithuanian suffered from a biking incident just before the beginning of the season, which forced him to undergo surgery on his left wrist.

Up until now, Malukas had been replaced at the open tests sessions, as well as St. Petersburg ans the 1 Million Dollars Challenge at Thermal Club, by former Juncos Hollinger Racing driver Callum Ilott.

The British driver, who had raced full time in Indycar in the past two seasons, 2022 and 2023, has now returned to the World Endurance Championship, taking on the Le Mans challenge for the second time in his career.

Ilott, who drives in the Hypercar class for Jota, will not be able to return to IndyCar for Long Beach due to its overlap with the 6H of Imola WEC race in Italy.

Pourchaire has been part of the Sauber F1 Academy for a number of years and won the 2023 F2 championship after an engrossing fight against Frederik Vesti.

The young French talent was very thankful and excited about the opportunity as he said: “This is an amazing opportunity to drive with such a legendary team in a legendary motorsport series like the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. I’ve watched INDYCAR since I was a young kid, and the racing is incredible. I was thrilled to get the call from the team. I’m grateful that Zak, Gavin and Tony thought of me for this opportunity and for the team at Sauber to allow me to get on track at Long Beach. I am also sorry that it’s as David continues to recover. It’s not going to be an easy task, but I’m ready for it.”

Gavin Ward, Team Principal, Arrow McLaren, said: “It’s a shame that David’s recovery is longer than we all originally anticipated. He’s been working with our team trainer very closely with what rehab and strength exercises are possible at this point, and the team’s been doing a great job in the meantime to work together through the changes they’ve had since his injury. Théo may be an unexpected driver in the INDYCAR paddock this season, but we’re excited to see what he can do on the track in Long Beach and are thankful for Sauber in working with us to make it happen. He has a strong resume, especially for his young age, and he’s eager to work with us and put his driving to the test in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES.”