Pagenaud Sidelined for Remaining IndyCar Races, Blomqvist Takes the Wheel at MSR

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Due to persistent symptoms resembling a concussion after his dramatic Mid-Ohio practice crash in July—attributed to brake failure—Simon Pagenaud has been declared unfit to race by IndyCar’s medical personnel. Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) has chosen to field Tom Blomqvist, their pick for the 2024 season, in the #60 vehicle for the season’s concluding races at Portland and Laguna Seca.

“Although I’ve had top-notch medical guidance, I’m still not at full throttle,” Pagenaud remarked. “Doctors suggest that I should extend my healing process, ruling me out of the final couple of races this season. It’s frustrating, to say the least. I’ve got this lingering cloud of post-concussion symptoms and, believe me, I’m pulling out all the stops to get back to being 100%. But for now, it’s my health that has to take the pole position.”

Simon Pagenaud, Meyer Shank Racing Honda
Photo Credit: Richard Dole / F1 Flow Images

Meanwhile, Tom Blomqvist, who made a splash in his initial race at Toronto only to be sidelined by an opening lap collision, is still in the running to defend his IMSA SportsCar championship with MSR’s Acura unit. This is despite the team taking a hefty 200-point hit after an irregularity in tire pressure reporting was unearthed following their Daytona 24 Hours win.

“The situation with Simon’s health adds a complicated layer, but our thoughts are with him as he’s on the mend,” Blomqvist acknowledged. “Big thanks to Jim [Meyer] and Mike [Shank] for giving me this opportunity. As I’m confirmed to be a full-time driver for MSR in 2024, this gives me a valuable head start.”

He continued, “Toronto was basically a cold open for me—no prep time to speak of. But now, I’ll be able to get in some simulator time and get a better grip on what to expect during race weekends.”

#23 United Autosports Oreca 07 – Gibson of Tom Blomqvist
Photo Credit: JEP / F1 Flow Images

Blomqvist has also pulled out of his scheduled participation in the World Endurance Championship event in Fuji for United Autosports, owing to a scheduling conflict with the IndyCar finale in Laguna Seca. Taking his place will be Ben Hanley, a former IndyCar racer.

Blomqvist remains hopeful about the upcoming events, asserting, “I’ve learned a bit, so it should be less of a grind this time. Portland is an unknown for me, and given the series’ level of competition, it’s like being thrown into a high-speed blender. Still, I’m not putting the weight of the world on my shoulders. I plan to give it all I’ve got, learn a ton, and come out the other end ready to tackle 2024.”

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about IndyCar Replacement

Why is Simon Pagenaud not racing for the rest of the IndyCar season?

Simon Pagenaud has been sidelined due to persistent symptoms resembling a concussion. He suffered a dramatic crash during practice at Mid-Ohio in July caused by brake failure. Despite multiple evaluations by IndyCar’s medical team, he has not received clearance to race.

Who is replacing Pagenaud for the final races of the IndyCar season?

Tom Blomqvist will be taking over the #60 car for Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) for the final two races of the season at Portland and Laguna Seca.

Is Tom Blomqvist new to IndyCar?

Tom Blomqvist made his IndyCar debut in Toronto, but was taken out in a first-corner crash. Despite this, he impressed in a wet qualifying session and is scheduled to drive full-time for MSR in 2024.

What other racing commitments does Tom Blomqvist have?

Tom Blomqvist is also involved in the IMSA SportsCar championship with MSR’s Acura unit. He’s still in contention for the title, even after the team received a 200-point penalty for tire pressure reporting irregularities.

Why did Tom Blomqvist withdraw from United Autosports’ World Endurance Championship?

Blomqvist had to pull out from United Autosports’ event in Fuji due to a scheduling conflict with IndyCar’s season finale at Laguna Seca. He will be replaced by former IndyCar racer Ben Hanley.

What are Pagenaud’s plans for recovery?

Simon Pagenaud is working closely with a medical team to recover from his post-concussion symptoms. Although progress is being made, the timeline for his recovery is individualized and he plans to focus on his health before returning to racing.

What does this mean for Meyer Shank Racing’s future plans?

MSR has Tom Blomqvist confirmed as their full-time driver for the 2024 season. The current situation provides Blomqvist with valuable experience before he takes on a full program next year.

More about IndyCar Replacement

  • Simon Pagenaud’s Racing Profile
  • Tom Blomqvist’s Career Highlights
  • Meyer Shank Racing Official Announcement
  • IndyCar Medical Guidelines and Policies
  • IMSA SportsCar Championship Standings
  • United Autosports’ World Endurance Championship Line-up
  • IndyCar 2023 Season Schedule
  • Portland and Laguna Seca Track Details

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RaceFan101 August 29, 2023 - 4:58 am

Anyone else wondering about the IMSA penalty? 200 points is harsh. Blomqvist must be feeling the pressure from all angles.

MotorMaven August 29, 2023 - 12:41 pm

Blomqvist in the #60 car, huh? Interesting, especially since he’s slated for full-time next season. Its like the universe giving him a free practice run.

VroomVroomLiz August 29, 2023 - 2:25 pm

Medical teams doin their job right. Rather have a racer miss few games than ruin his life. health first always!

TechTalkTim August 29, 2023 - 3:11 pm

So is it just me or is the whole tire pressure reporting thing kinda obscure? Like how did they even catch that.

IndyInsider August 29, 2023 - 3:38 pm

Blomqvist pulled out of World Endurance for this? The guy is all in on IndyCar. He better deliver.

JustDrive August 29, 2023 - 4:16 pm

Pagenaud is a class act, putting health first but also supporting his replacement. That’s sportsmanship.

SpeedJunkie42 August 29, 2023 - 6:58 pm

man, this is tough news about Pagenaud. Concussions ain’t no joke. hope he gets back in shape soon.

GearHeadGary August 29, 2023 - 10:04 pm

Blomqvist has shoes to fill, but the kid’s got chops. 2024 gonna be a blast, can’t wait.


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