Sam Schmidt believes both James Hinchcliffe and Mikhail Aleshin have the ability to win races during the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series season as the Schmidt Peterson Motorsport team look to fight more regularly at the front of the field.
The team have been able to retain both drivers from 2016, something Schmidt is happy about, and the stability should mean that both Hinchcliffe and Aleshin having stronger seasons than last year, with both drivers pushing each other to bigger and better results.
Last year, both drivers finished races in the runner-up spot, Aleshin at Pocono and Hinchcliffe at Texas, but Schmidt admits he would be disappointed if both drivers did not see the chequered flag first in 2017.
“We really feel like we’re a top-five championship team and should be winning two or three races a year,” said Schmidt to Motorsport.com. “If we don’t win with both drivers this year, I’ll be disappointed.
“I think James and Mikhail complement each other really well. In the first half of last year, I’d say Mikhail was learning a lot from James and chasing him a bit. But in the last half of the season, he was pushing Hinch and on regular occasions was able to outqualify him.
“That’s what we hope will continue this year – they’ll push each other to some great things.”