Indianapolis businessmen Mike Harding of Harding Group and Dennis Reinbold of Dreyer & Reinbold Racing.
Harding and Reinbold have formed a technical alliance and are calling the new effort Harding Racing for this year’s 500.
The Harding Group has been a partner with Indianapolis Motor Speedway in paving projects and client hospitality. This will be the first time Harding Group has entered a car in the 500.
Chaves will drive the No. 88 Harding Racing Chevrolet. The 23 year old Gabby is the 2014 Indy Lights champion. He won the Indy Lights Freedom 100 on the IMS oval in 2014. He is a veteran of 23 Verizon IndyCar Series starts.
Harding — owner and president of Harding Group, the Indianapolis-based concrete and asphalt paving company started by his father, Fred, in 1960 — is the race team’s owner. Larry Curry, a fixture running Indy car racing programs for years, is the team manager and competition director. The team attended Wednesday’s open test at Texas Motor Speedway for Chaves to complete an oval refresher test.
A pair of Indianapolis businessman have created a new IndyCar team and announced Monday that they will enter Gabby Chaves into May’s 101st running of the Indianapolis 500.
The new team, Harding Racing, was formed by Mike Harding of Harding Group and Dennis Reinbold of Dreyer & Reinbold Racing.
Dreyer & Reinbold has a long history in the 500, while the Harding Group, an Indianapolis-based concrete and asphalt company, will field a car for the first time.
The 23-year-old Chaves, who has competed in 23 Verizon IndyCar Series races — including two 500s — will drive the No. 88 Chevrolet. His team manager and competition director will be longtime Indy car veteran Larry Curry, while the team’s driving instructor will be two-time 500 champion Al Unser Jr.
Chaves and the Harding Racing Team joined the rest of the series Wednesday for testing at the Texas Motor Speedway oval.
“I’m extremely delighted to have the opportunity to get to challenge for my third Indy 500,” Chaves said in a news release. “I am very excited to be joining a new team with our new owner, Mike Harding, and everyone involved, including Larry Curry, who has been instrumental in getting the team together and guiding it.”
Chaves won the 2014 Indy Lights series championship and was the 2015 IndyCar series rookie of the year while driving for Bryan Herta Autosport. He won rookie of the year at the 2015 500 after his 16th-place finish.
Chaves drove in seven races for Dale Coyne Racing in 2016, including a 20th-place finish at the 500.
Dreyer and Reinbold will now have two entries in the 500. In February, the team announced it would enter Sage Karam into the race.