Dallar dedicate chassis to Dan

2011-10-19 10:42

Las Vegas - IndyCar's new Dallara chassis will be named in honour of two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon.

Wheldon, who was killed Sunday in a fiery, 15-car pileup at the season-ending race in Las Vegas, conducted most of the testing on the new 2012 IndyCar.

"Dan lives in the memory of everybody at Dallara," company president and founder Gianpaolo Dallara said in a statement Tuesday.

"We will honour his memory for the years to come by dedicating the Dallara IndyCar2012 in his name. He deserves that."

Flags at the company's Italian headquarters were lowered to half staff Monday.

IndyCar vice president of technology Will Phillips, who oversaw the testing program, said Wheldon did everything he could to make the car safer and stronger and that his assistance will be "sorely missed."

IndyCar is investigating the fatal crash.

Formula One's governing body (FIA) and the Automobile Competition Committee of the United States, an umbrella organization of auto racing sanctioning bodies in the United States, will assist in the inquiry.

Preliminary findings were expected within several weeks.

Meanwhile IndyCar officials have also cancelled this week's two-day test of the new 2012 race car at Las Vegas.

Target Chip Ganassi managing director Mike Hull says IndyCar made the call on its own and that his team will test the new car later this year.

Four-time series champ Dario Franchitti was scheduled to run at the 1.5-mile oval Wednesday and Thursday. He and Wheldon were close friends.

Franchitti's wife, actress Ashley Judd, wrote on Twitter: "I appreciate IndyCar cancelling my husband's test at Las Vegas track. The new car needs development - but not now, and never again there."