Chaves to Substitute for SPM at Phoenix IndyCar Test

Phoenix, AZ – February 25, 2016 – Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) announced today that Gabby Chaves will temporarily fill the seat of the No. 7 SMP Racing Honda entry during the Verizon IndyCar Series open test at Phoenix International Raceway.

Russian driver Mikhail Aleshin, SPM’s contracted driver for the No. 7 car, is unable to attend the test due to last-minute work visa issues.

Twenty-two-year-old Chaves, who completed his rookie IndyCar season with Bryan Herta Autosport last year, finished 15th in the championship points standings. The Columbian-American driver had a season-best finish of 9th at the second Dual in Detroit race and lead 31 laps at the ABC Supply Co. 500 at Pocono Raceway.

“While we wish Mikhail was able to participate in this test with us, we’re confident that he’ll get up to speed quickly when he returns,” said SPM General Manager Piers Phillips. “Gabby had a solid rookie season and we appreciate his willingness to step up quickly for this important test. We have high expectations for SPM’s 2016 season and our goal is to use these test days at PIR to set us up for success.”

The Verizon IndyCar Series will be on track Friday, February 26 and Saturday, February 27. Test times are 12-3pm and 5-8pm PST both days. The track is open to the public and more information is available at PhoenixRaceway.com.

About Schmidt Peterson Motorsports:

Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) was established in 2001 and is owned by former IndyCar driver Sam Schmidt and Canadian businessman Ric Peterson. Schmidt was paralyzed (quad) in 2000 after an accident during testing at Walt Disney World Speedway in Orlando, Fla. SPM fields cars in the Verizon IndyCar Series, including the Indianapolis 500, and the Indy Lights Series presented by Cooper Tires. SPM is the most successful team in Indy Lights Series history with sixty-five race wins and seven championships. In addition, SPM won the coveted Indy 500 pole position in 2011, and has won five Verizon IndyCar Series races between 2013 and 2015.

About Conquer Paralysis Now:

Conquer Paralysis Now is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization with a mission to cure paralysis, formerly known as the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation. The organization is leading the charge for a cure through funding scientific research, medical treatment and technological advances benefiting those paralyzed by spinal cord injuries, stroke or diseases such as ALS, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s or in other ways. For more information, visit conquerparalysisnow.org.