Malukas focusing on the future after Arrow McLaren exit

David Malukas has opened up about his recent split with Arrow McLaren, the progress in the healing of his injured left hand that prevented him from racing for the team, and his goals of getting back behind the wheel of an IndyCar.

Informed of the team’s decision to terminate his contract prior to the Monday morning announcement, the Illinois native took most of the week to process the big change in his life and was happy to find a wave of support awaiting him when he returned to social media.

“I’m doing good. I’m somebody who’s just online all the time everywhere so it’s very hard to stay away from it. I wasn’t really knowing what to expect when I went on, but honestly it was amazing. There’s so much love, so much support,” Malukas said.


“Of course when the whole situation went down, I got sad, I got a little bit emotional, but I picked myself up and now I’m super-motivated.”

The 22-year-old wasn’t naïve about the situation after doing a considerable amount of damage to his left hand and wrist in a pre-season mountain biking crash. Slow healing conspired against racing for the team over the four opening events, and with an increasing urgency to have a fixed plan for the No. 6 from May onwards, the uncertainty with Malukas led to Arrow McLaren’s decision.

It obviously wasn’t what he wanted, but it didn’t come as a complete surprise.

“When the injury first happened, the team was definitely on my side, and it was all very good,” he said. “But when the injury started taking longer than expected, I had a feeling that this would maybe come to pass. So I had time to prepare for it, to get ready for when this would eventually happen.

“There’s a lot of emotions from it. And from my side, just making all the relationships in the team and everybody there, it’s been really good. I have made a lot of new friends along the way. It’s just no hard feelings. It’s just business, and it was my fault, I obviously had the injury outside of the car before the season started. It’s tough for me, but also was tough on the team, coming from sponsors and all that. It’s just issues that they had to deal with. So I understand why it all happened.”

Malukas received good news the same day of the parting with Arrow McLaren.

“I got the cast off,” he said. “I came back from Barber on Monday, I went to the to the doc, saw the scans and they’re like, ‘You know what, you’re good to go.’ So I’ve been freehand, just building up strength again and doing some little bits of movement. Things are looking happy. I’m just really happy because I have a hand back. So it’s I can actually like clean dishes and like do simple life things.”

The doctor also gave Malukas a mid-June timeline to potentially reach a state of being fully healed. Once that recovery milestone is reached, he can look to climb into the cockpit and test his strength and abilities.

“That’s what I’ve been figuring out the past few days,” he said. “So when it comes to what car we’re going to obviously test to get the IndyCar clearance, that’s still a bit of an unknown. The [Arrow McLaren] team are still supporting me, helping me with the training side, and making sure that I’m getting that support for the next few weeks just to make sure everything’s good.

“It was a pretty strong goal that we were trying to hit for the 500 [in the No. 6 car]. But now that this isn’t happening, I can actually just take my time. Talked with obviously all the doctors and the new timeline for the hand to be pretty much back to 100 percent is somewhere around mid-June just because there’s no need to rush.”

The only regular IndyCar entry without a full-time driver is Dale Coyne Racing and its No. 51 Honda, where Malukas drove from 2022-2023. If he’s able to race, a reunion with Coyne — while exploring his options for a season-long return in 2025 — could be the easiest path forward.

“I have not talked to Dale about that yet, or haven’t really had any talks on it,” he said. “And I think for right now, we’re just going to focus on getting this hand back. And then once it’s back to 100 percent, then we start figuring out what we want to do and what the game plan is going to be.”

And so Malukas will join the small group of drivers who are searching for their next station in IndyCar. Once healed, he should command interest from a few teams who could lose their drivers to bigger or better teams in free agency.

“I’ll be at all the races, showing my face,” he said. “Definitely wanting to be back, needing to be back racing as soon as I can.”

Story originally appeared on Racer