Kyle Kirkwood will make the switch to Andretti Autosport for the 2023 NTT IndyCar Series season, the team confirmed Wednesday.
The 23-year-old Floridian will replace Alexander Rossi in the No. 27 AutoNation Honda.
“I couldn’t be more excited to return to Andretti Autosport next year and represent AutoNation and Honda.” said Kirkwood. “Andretti Autosport is a place I’ve called home for years past and I have truly felt like family. I have a ton of loyalty to the team, and it means a lot to have Michael and the Andretti team offer me this opportunity. AutoNation has been doing great work in raising awareness and funding for cancer research. I’m honored to Drive Pink (DRVPNK) next season.”
After winning the Indy Lights championship last season with Andretti Autosport, Kirkwood has spent his rookie campaign in IndyCar with AJ Foyt Racing. He has shown flashes of brilliance at times, such as his bravery and passing prowess prior to crashing in his first oval start at Texas in March. He has one top-10 through the opening six races.
“I have worked extremely hard this season and will continue to work harder every day for the A.J. Foyt team,” Kirkwood said. “I want to thank the entire team at A.J. Foyt Racing for giving me the opportunity to compete in the NTT IndyCar Series. The group on the No. 14 car have been incredible and I am beyond grateful to them for all the amazing experiences we have been able to share together so far this season.”
Michael Andretti, CEO and Chairman of Andretti Autosport, added, “We really enjoyed having Kyle as part of our Indy Lights team and he’s off to a strong start in IndyCar. I think he’ll bring a fresh perspective and will be competitive. We are looking forward to helping him continue his career growth.
“AutoNation first joined the team eight years ago and we’ve been thrilled to see how their support has continued to grow over the years. We’ve seen a lot of successes both on and off the track and are excited to see what Kyle and AutoNation can do together for the DRVPNK campaign.”
Rossi has been a fixture with Andretti for the past seven seasons, which includes winning the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 as a rookie in 2016. An announcement regarding Rossi’s next move is expected in the coming days.
“Alexander has been a great contender for us, and we’ve enjoyed having him as part of the team for seven seasons,” added Andretti. “He’s won races and become a leader in the team, but all careers and all teams evolve, and we’ve mutually decided it’s time for each of us to move on. I have no doubt he’ll have a continued, successful INDYCAR career and we wish him the best. In the meantime, we are all working hard to finish the 2022 season strong.”