Originally written on Race Review Online  |  Last updated 11/7/14

The entry-list to next month's 96th Running of the Indianapolis 500 was announced last week. On the list were 34 car and driver combos with a few of the rides listed still open.

Today, during the IZOD IndyCar Series' weekly teleconference, team owner Bobby Rahal announced that his team Rahal/Letterman/Lanigan Racing would field driver Michel Jourdain Jr. in the No. 30 entry. Jourdain Jr. will pilot the No. 30 Honda and have backing from primary sponsor Office Depot.

Originally, the ride was entered for Italian rookie Luca Filipi, who was hoping to make his first career IZOD IndyCar Series start in Indianapolis, but funding never came about. Rahal picked Jourdain, who drove for Rahal in Champ Car in the early 2000s, to fill the seat.

Jourdain Jr. will be joining teammate Takuma Sato in Indy and will attempt to make his first Indy 500 in 16 years.

Joining Jourdain Jr. in earning a ride for the Indianapolis 500 is second year driver Jay Howard. Howard will drive for Michael Shank Racing in next month's race.

As of now, Shank doesn't have an engine for the car as he was originally supposed to be supported by Lotus, but due to Lotus' underperformance, Shank is looking to obtain a Honda or Chevy engine.

Shank hoped to run the full season, but engine availability and sponsorship progams never came about and he's been sitting on the sidelines so far this year. Shank was the team owner for the winning team in the Rolex 24 hours of Daytona this year, and hopes to steal another upset victory this year at Indy with Howard at the wheel.

Another big announcement today on the IndyCar front was Dollar General returning to sponsor Sarah Fisher's IndyCar team. Dollar General will be the primary sponsor for rookie Josef Newgarden at Indy next month. For the first three races of the season, Newgarden's car lacked a full-time sponsor and featured plain white and baby blue colors.


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