IMHO these last minute deals for engine leases with Fisher and Dragon Racing did not make Indy Car look good.
This offseason has seen several last-minute deals come together, or potentially out of nowhere. Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing was fortunate to accrue a Honda lease to run its talented rookie Josef Newgarden, although it was late, and the Dragon Racing two-car Lotus effort caught everyone off guard when it was announced.
Shank's intentions to enter IndyCar were made official in October, a full two months before either of the SFHR or Dragon deals, and despite making investments, saying largely the right things, and remaining consistent in saying, “I want to be there!” he still isn't, yet. It's been more than six months and he's still basically a Fred Flintstone body-double in trying to pedal his chassis around the track.
The sad saga that has been Shank's attempt to get on the grid is a cautionary tale for prospective team owners who want to make it to IndyCar. You may have enthusiasm, passion, dedication and investment, but if you don't have an engine lease, you don't have a spot. To be honest, it's ridiculous – and far from welcoming. Besides the Lotus comments, Shank also told the AP Monday he had asked IndyCar to guarantee the team an engine, regardless of which one, and “they never Responded"