Wednesday, Nov 7 03:25pm
AUTHOR: Simon Chapman

Taylor Harte, the little-known New Zealander trying to crack IndyCar

On the other side of the world Kiwi kid Taylor Harte hopes to be New Zealand’s next IndyCar Series success story.


Born in the United States and raised in New Zealand, Harte began racing at just six-years-old and spent much of his early racing career in karts.


He won the KartSport New Zealand National Sprint Championship for KF3 in 2013 and last year won the North Island Championship in DD2. He’s also been on the podium in his last 52 events he’s raced in.


After racing at big name overseas events and winning several domestic karting titles, he moved back to the United States to begin the next step of his career. An opportunity came about to work as a mechanic for Swam Motorsport who race in USF2000 and Pro Mazda.


He recently had the chance to test with another outfit Exclusive Autosport in a Tatuus USF-17 at Chicago.


“That was really successful,” he told


“I went into the USF2000 car straight out of go karting, which is a big step up, but I ended the day just half a second off the top guys and they were on new tyres.


“I have done a lot of work in a simulator with Darren Manning, an ex-IndyCar driver to improve myself as much as I can.


“I adapted really well, but I still have a lot to learn.”


Harte’s ambition is to follow the Road to Indy, which is a ladder system that allows drivers to take the necessary steps towards IndyCar.


It begins at the USF2000 Championship. Harte hopes to contest that next season, but the cost associated are close to $500,000 NZD. From there drivers progress to the Pro Mazda Championship, then Indy Lights and finally IndyCar.


Harte has so far been supported by Matt Carter and the Carter's Tyres outfit as well as Richard Giltrap of the Giltrap Group. They have been influential in supporting Harte's budding international career.


“The USF2000 Series is part of the Road to Indy so that’s the plan for us,” he said.


“It’s a seven-round calendar that follows IndyCar and races the day before the Indianapolis Grand Prix.”


The Harte name might sound familiar for some. His father Dane Harte was a crew chief for CART and Indy Racing League teams Dick Simon Racing and Cheever Racing. He won the Indianapolis 500 with Eddie Cheever in 1998.


With his father’s success and contacts abroad, Harte hopes that’ll help is ambitions towards IndyCar.


“I’ve got a lot of teams calling me and wanting to do stuff, it’s just a matter of getting my name out there and getting the funding.”


Photo: Coopers Photography