SALEM, Ind. – Five-time Indianapolis 500 starter James Davison will make his USAC Silver Crown Champ Car Series this weekend at Salem Speedway.
With regular driver Kevin Thomas Jr. competing in this weekend’s Knoxville Nationals, David Byrd, who supported Davison’s Indy effort, got the ball rolling and made a deal with the 32-year-old Davison to make his USAC debut in the DHR/Byrd Racing No. 11 at Salem.
Davison will be the first driver in 21 years to compete in Saturday’s Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial and the Indianapolis 500 in the same season. The last driver to do the double was Jack Hewitt.
“David just called me and said that he has a deal with Davey Hamilton and asked me if I wanted to drive it,” Davison said. “I gave it some thought and said, ‘let’s give it a try,’ and here we are.”
Davison has made seven NTT IndyCar Series starts since 2013, with five of them coming in the Indianapolis 500. He’s also competed in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, earning a best finish of fourth at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
“I love horsepower and high power-to-weight ratio cars like a shifter kart or a Formula One car, and I’ve been fortunate to drive both,” Davison explained. “Silver Crown and Sprint Cars’ power-to-weight ratio is pretty high. Hopefully, we can run competitively and finish in one piece. Half the battle is just wheeling the car back to the trailer and getting the result. It’ll be a tall order with tire management and with it being a 75-lap race, and I’ve never done it before, so I’ll just have to give it my best shot with no experience.”