Long Beach, CA – April 19, 2015 – Race day at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach held promise for the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports drivers at the start, but unnecessary contact in the Indy Lights race and a lack of yellow flags in the IndyCar race lead to some less than ideal results.
British driver Jack Harvey started the day on pole for the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires race. On just the first lap, Harvey was collected by the No. 18 car and went five laps down as the No. 42 Racing Steps Foundation crew worked hard to repair his damaged rear wing. He later made contact with the tire barrier in turn eight and finished P10.
Teammates RC Enerson, Scott Anderson and Ethan Ringel finished P4, P6 and P7, respectively.
A sunny afternoon at the 11-turn, 1.968-mile street circuit set the scene for the Verizon IndyCar Series race. Driver James Hinchcliffe started P13 and finished P12 during the 80-lap race that ran mostly under a green flag.
“Today was pretty straight-forward,” said Hinchcliffe. “A little too straight-forward, I guess, with just the one caution and not a lot of chance to mix up strategies. We ran our race and did what we could. We got a couple guys on the first round and lost one or two of those in the second.
“We didn’t get a full tank on that last stop unfortunately, which forced us to save a bit of fuel on the last stint. It would’ve been interesting to see if we could’ve taken the fight to Graham [Rahal], [Sebastian] Saavedra and Carlos [Munoz] there but we kept our nose clean. In an all-green race, there’s only so much you can do. Thanks to the No. 5 Arrow Electronics boys for the hard work all weekend. Now we regroup and go to Barber.”
Hinchcliffe’s teammate James Jakes started where he finished in P19.
“It wasn’t the day we wanted for the No. 7 SPM Launch Consulting Honda,” said Jakes. “It was a tough day – tough weekend, really – but we’ll work hard and get ready for Barber. Obviously, we’ve still got some reasonable points from New Orleans and gathered a few more today, so we’ll just roll on to next weekend.”
In one week, the Verizon IndyCar Series and Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires will head to Barber Motorsports Park for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama. Indy Lights will run their fourth and fifth races of the 2015 season. IndyCar will headline the weekend with a 90-lap race on the 17-turn, 2.38-mile permanent road course. Fans can get more information and tickets at www.BarberMotorsports.com or watch the race during the live broadcast on NBC Sports Network.