Ford chief denies “crazy” IndyCar engine rumors

Ford Performance director Dave Pericak has denied rumors that Ford is planning a return to IndyCar Series competition in the near future.

Speaking exclusively to at Daytona on Friday, Pericak said he was aware of the speculation but insisted that it was unfounded.

“Yeah, there’s rumors flying again, it’s crazy,” he said. “There are no plans for us to return to Indy, I can tell you that we’re not looking to do that.

“It’s partly due to the relevance. IndyCar is fun, it would be great to go and do it, but it’s not why we do what we do. It’s just not at the heart of what we’re doing [in motorsport].”

Road-relevance key

Pericak outlined that Ford would only countenance full factory-backed or works-supported programs that have a direct impact on its street car range, such as its GT supercar or Fiesta in WRC and World Rallycross.

“We use the track to test and improve our technologies, and bring it back into the road cars,” he added. “That’s working well, not just on the GT but other products as well. To be able to leverage that [racing] program to polish the Ford oval and to communicate what Ford is about – our engineering prowess. It’s been really powerful.

“The cool thing about the GT program is how relevant it is to people and cars that we put in driveways. It’s not an untouchable, it’s something that people can associate with. That’s what’s important to us.

“We don’t want to go out there just to race. I mean, racing is fun, but we’re gonna go win and leverage that effort to better all our production cars. If there’s not a direct translation to the cars, then we’re not going to spend the money, time and effort.

“We truly are using racing as a testbed.”