James Hinchcliffe could have been very valuable to Chip Ganassi

James Hinchcliffe was close to signing a deal to race for Chip Ganassi next season in three...

James Hinchcliffe was close to signing a deal to race for Chip Ganassi next season in three different series. (JACK BOLAND/QMI Agency/Files)

DEAN MCNULTY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:49 PM ET

HOMESTEAD, FLA. - Rumours abound in IndyCar and NASCAR that Chip Ganassi missed a huge opportunity to sign Canada's James Hinchcliffe for his Target Ganassi Racing team.

Now with the sudden and unexpected retirement of Dario Franchitti, Ganassi in searching for a driver for the No. 10 IndyCar Chevrolet -- and Hinchcliffe would have been the perfect fit.

According to sources in both the NASCAR and IndyCar paddocks, Hinchcliffe was close to signing a deal to race for Ganassi next season in three series -- IndyCar and part time in the NASCAR Nationwide Series and the new Tudor United Sports Car Championship.

But Ganassi turned his back on the deal, allowing Hinchcliffe to re-sign with Andretti Autosport.

Now the Target team faces the prospect of searching for a driver of less ability to fill the fourth seat in the Ganassi garage.

Ganassi said Friday he will seek the best driver available.


Videos

Photos