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Agustín Canapino Confirmed as Second Juncos Hollinger Racing Driver

Agustín Canapino is set to represent Argentina in INDYCAR for the first time (Photo: Juncos Hollinger Racing).

Agustín Canapino is a racer that a lot of American open-wheel fans are scratching their heads to learn about.

However, his home country of Argentina views Canapino as a superstar racer that hopes he’ll succeed in the NTT IndyCar Series this season.

Juncos Hollinger Racing announced Thursday that Canapino will pilot the No. 78 Chevrolet for the full 2023 campaign. With fellow rookie Marcus Armstrong only running the road/street courses and Kyle Larson not competing in the Indianapolis 500 until 2024, there are only two confirmed rookies for the 500.

Furthermore, Canapino is the second confirmed full-time rookie in the championship trail, joining AJ Foyt Racing’s Benjamin Pedersen.

Thursday’s announcement symbolizes another reason for Argentina to celebrate. First the World Cup, and now Canapino’s rise to become the first Argentine to run in IndyCar since Juan Manuel Fangio II from 1995-97, when he competed for both PacWest (1995) and Dan Gurney (1996-97) in CART.

Over the years, Canapino has collected 15 national championships in different facets of motor racing. Titles include the Super TC2000, Top Race V6 and Turismo Carretera. He’s also driven in Juncos prepared DPi Cadillacs where he drove both the Rolex 24 and the 12 Hours of Sebring in 2019.

Last October, Canapino, who’ll turn 33 Jan. 19, reunited with Juncos by testing an Indy car at Sebring. Additionally, Canapino and JHR brought the sport to Argentina where a combined total of 75,000 fans saw one of their heroes run laps in Buenos Aires and Rio Hondo.

From there, a deal would was made. Canapino is set for the challenge lying ahead, trying to rise from an unknown into INDYCAR stardom.

“For me, this is a great opportunity, so I am very grateful to Ricardo Juncos, Brad Hollinger, and all the sponsors that are making this possible. I’m going to do my best in every moment to get the best possible results,” said Canapino. “I’m going in with my mind set on learning and going step-by-step, but I’m also focused on evolving throughout the season. The goal is to finish the races, get to know the car, and the circuits – especially the ovals.

“INDYCAR is the most competitive and difficult category in the world, and the cars are the most demanding and require the maximum effort and preparation on my part. I am happy to take on this challenge and I’m motivated to perform well and repay those that have trusted me with this opportunity.”

Co-owner Ricardo Juncos explained that having Canapino in both Argentine venues may have begun some buzz about potentially having the sport back there in the future.

“I want to thank the main collaboration of INPROTUR (National Bureau of Tourism Promotion) which is the entity that promotes Argentina throughout the world and who, from the very first moment, believed in this project,” Juncos said.

“Representing my country permanently and promoting tourism in Argentina throughout the INDYCAR series, including at the famous Indy 500, fills me with pride and is another dream come true.”

Back in 1971, the USAC Marlboro Championship Trail kicked off its first two rounds in Rafaela, both won by Al Unser. Fast forward to 2023, Juncos Hollinger Racing and Visit Argentina will collaborate in promoting the country in hopes the long-lasting drought of IndyCar racing comes to a close someday.

In the meantime, JHR will continue to grow after completing their first full season with Callum Ilott, who’ll be continuing to drive the No. 77 Chevrolet. The 24-year-old British racer scored two top-10 finishes and qualified second in the season finale at Laguna Seca only for a mechanical failure to crush a dream weekend for the organization.

Callum Ilott scored one of his two top-10s at Portland (Photo: Luis Torres | The Podium Finish).

Brad Hollinger discussed the upcoming season where he hopes the team is capable of scoring podiums and having Canapino could enhance the program.

“Callum demonstrated significant potential during his inaugural 2022 campaign as he surprised the field with his strong pace while learning every track. Partnering Agustín with Callum gives Juncos Hollinger Racing an extremely talented and proven driver lineup,” said Hollinger.

“Agustín brings an unparalleled level of success in multiple race series to the team. His ability to adapt is exceptional and the significant experience he has accumulated winning multiple championships will complement Callum and the team nicely. We look forward to competing at the tip of the arrow this year with the goal of multiple podiums.”

INDYCAR kicks off its 17-race saga with the annual Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg Sunday, March 5 at 12 p.m. ET on NBC.

Throughout my young motorsports media career, my number-one goal is to be a personnel that can be flexible with my writing and photography in the world of NASCAR, INDYCAR and ARCA. Content delivery is vital because this is my main passion and what keeps me going. I've dealt with several challenges in my life, such as autism and making most out of trips despite relying on transportation. Even my quest of finding acceptance in my profession which has been my biggest challenge since graduating from college in 2016. Despite those hurdles with Motorsports Tribune and now The Podium Finish, I promise that you'll see excellence with my content. With two National Motorsports Press Association photography awards, I'm not slowing down anytime soon. Outside of media, I'm super vocal about my musical tastes that goes from Metallica to HAIM. Not only that, expect my social media filled with references nobody will understand, especially Licorice Pizza.

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