Vidal Reyna-Sanchez (Born February 19th, 1988 in Tenerife, Spain) is a Spanish-American Racing Driver, currently living in Indianapolis, who is currently driving in the IndyCar series for the Horizon Motorsport team. He is most famous for his stint in the F1RWRS for Melrose Racing Team and Horizon Motorsport.
2013 - MRT/Horizon
Reyna-Sanchez, whilst may not having the talent to drive in Formula 1, has always dreamed to drive in the highest echelons of International Motorsport. His dream came to fruition thanks to his American sponsors and Roger Penske offering money to give the Spanish-American a shot at the F1RWRS United States Grand Prix in Dallas. Daniel Melrose answered the call as the team were looking for some more funds to direct to the early development of the MRT M5 as the team itself had nothing to lose from the horror baseline they were starting from for 2013. Reyna Sanchez made his debut at the race in place of Phillippe Nicolas and whilst me have only qualified 26th and last, he finished 12th in the race simply by keeping the car on the track, which was what all the team wanted and expected of him.
Reyna-Sanchez was later given a second bite at the F1RWRS cherry when Melrose fired Frank Zimmer from the Horizion Motorsport team and, with nobody else willing to take up the vacant seat at the struggling MRT B-Team, Reyna-Sanchez was given the unenviable task of trying to extracting something of the lamentable HM-2, which in itself was derived from the MRT M3B from 2012.
Reyna-Sanchez was initally given a satellite Penske drive in the 2012 IndyCar season alongside regulars Will Power, Ryan Briscoe and Helio Castroneves. While both Castroneves and Power were championship contenders all year, Reyna-Sanchez in the UPS-sponsored car was disappointing with only three top-10 finishes to his name all year. Those top 10s all came at the three superspeedways on the calender with a pair of 9ths at Texas and Fontana, and a fantastic 6th place at the Indianapolis 500. However, he was unlucky to not score podiums at the two short ovals when he got taken out by lapped traffic on both occasions.
For 2013, Penske reduced their team to a three-car effort with Briscoe and Reyna-Sanchez sharing the IZOD car with Reyna-Sanchez to conduct all the oval events on the calender. Whilst he was driving in the F1RWRS, he also managed the part-time schedule with a much improved set of results. Reyna-Sanchez continued his good form around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with 5th at the Indy 500 and a career best third at Iowa. Reyna-Sanchez also drove in the 2013 F1RWRS Indianapolis 500 and qualified a relatively lowly 18th. However, some raceday magic meant the Spanish-American was running as high as 4th before a mid-race accident ended his afternoon early.
After Vidal was dropped by MRT, he went back to a full time schedule in IndyCar. He was again picked up by Penske as a full-time replacement for Briscoe. Renya-Sanchez's talent was finally truly realised as managed to win the 2014 Indy 500 after starting from a lowly fifteenth on the grid as he spent all year competing with fellow MRT refugee Dean O'Lauchlan and many of the IndyCar regulars for the championship.