Former IndyCar champion Tony Kanaan is looking for a new drive for 2011 after parting company with Andretti Autosport.
The Brazilian's seat had been in doubt since long-time sponsor 7-Eleven announced earlier this month that it would end its association with Michael Andretti's squad. Andretti Autosport has now officially declared Kanaan a free agent and released him to chase other opportunities.
"I don't agree with some things and it's very disappointing but I have no hard feelings," Kanaan said in an interview with SpeedTV.com's Robin Miller. "It's sad because I wanted to be there. It's been my home for nine years and I have a lot of great memories but it's life, it's reality, and now I've got to find a new home."
The Brazilian had the opportunity to move to Ganassi for the 2009 season, but chose to remain with Andretti Green (as it was then known). The Ganassi seat instead went to Dario Franchitti, who went on to win the next two titles, but Kanaan insisted he had no regrets.
"I'm still convinced it was the best choice for me and it wasn't about money," he said. "We had won three championships and two Indy 500s and it was the 'big three' with Penske, Ganassi and AGR. It's easy now to say I was stupid, but I was loyal to my team and that's just the way I am."
The 35-year-old Brazilian joined Andretti when it made the move from Champ Car at the start of 2003, and has since won 14 races as well as the 2004 title. He was Andretti's top driver in this year's championship, finishing sixth behind the Ganassi and Penske quintet.
Although he has been one of the higher-paid drivers in a field where most have to bring sponsorship to secure seats, Kanaan said money was not a priority in his hunt for a 2011 drive.
"I know some people might think they can't afford me but I'm not looking for money right now, I'm looking for a competitive team where I can go and win races," he said.
He also refused to rule out returning to Andretti if he found a personal sponsor.
"You know it sounds crazy but if I get a good sponsor and bringing it back to Michael is my best option, that's what I'll do," Kanaan said.
Andretti currently only has Marco Andretti and Danica Patrick secured for 2011. Ryan Hunter-Reay's seat is also in doubt due to sponsorship issues as his main backer IZOD has said it will not be a primary sponsor next year.