Adam Carroll is to drive for one of American’s top teams, Andretti Autosport, in the US IndyCar series later this year.
The A1 GP champion from Portadown has joined the team run by the legendary Andretti family for a limited number of races in the second half of the Indycar season with a view to a full programme in 2011.
The announcement was made last night by team boss Michael Andretti and comes in the wake of several months of negotiations.
Making the announcement in Indianapolis, Andretti said: “We’re very excited that Adam is on board. He is a special talent and someone who we believe will have a bright future with us at Andretti Autosport.
“ It was important for us to give him an opportunity this year and start building for the years to come. I’m looking forward to seeing what he can do later this year.”
Andretti also said Carroll’s schedule of races would not be decided until after the Indianapolis 500 on May 30.
Carroll, of course, had been linked to a move to Formula One this year, but a switch to America was always a more likely option.
He’s naturally excited to get the opportunity with America’s most famous racing family.
“It is gratifying to know that the success I’ve enjoyed so far has caught the attention of a team owner like Michael Andretti,” he said.
“The IndyCar series is clearly one of the most competitive formulas in the world right now and I’m looking forward to being introduced into the field later this year.”
The Andretti team already fields four drivers in the IZOD Indycar series — Tony Kaaman, Danica Patrick, Ryan-Hunter-Reay and Michael Andretti’s son, Marco.
It was while he was driving for Team Ireland in the A1GP Championship that Carroll caught the attention of the Andrettis.
Michael took over the Team USA franchise, installing Marco in the car and attending many of the races.
While Andretti junior had limited success, it was Ulsterman Carroll who caught the eye with five wins, six pole positions and finishing the 2009 season as champion.