Oriol Servia will be returning to Panther Dreyer & Reinbold Racing for the 2013 Izod IndyCar season. And unlike last year when the driver and team were saddled with the underperforming Lotus power plant for the first part of the season, DRR will use Chevrolet power for the entire slate of 19 races.
"As an organization, we have worked very hard to be in the position to hire a talented driver whom is an appropriate fit to the personality of our team both in and out of the car," said team co-owner Dennis Reinbold in a statement released by the team. "We couldn't be happier to have the continuity of a second year with Oriol in the No. 22 car."
After finishing a career-high fourth in the 2011 IndyCar championship, big things were expected of Servia in 2012. However, a Lotus engine that was noticeably slower than its Chevy and Honda counterparts quickly dashed those hopes, as the Spaniard finished no better than 11th in the opening four events.
But a merger with Panther Racing and a switch to Chevy power before the Indianapolis 500 proved beneficial. In the remaining 11 races, Servia posted four top-five finishes including a fourth-place result in the 500 and climbed his way up to 13th in points.
In 54 starts in the IndyCar Series, Servia's best finish is a pair of runner-ups at New Hampshire and Baltimore.
"I am very pleased to partner with DRR again in 2013," Servia said. "We had several great on-track performances this past season, including our fourth-place finish at the Indianapolis 500, but we're not satisfied. Our goal is to win that race and contend week in and week out for wins and podiums at all races. Continuity is very important in our sport and now we'll be able to build upon our successes in a second year together."