Rahal, Lundgaard, and Harvey: Qualifying Report for the Firestone GP of St. Petersburg

Rahal Letterman Lanigan RacingFirestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg
QUALIFYING NOTES/QUOTES – Saturday, February 26, 2022


1)         Scott McLaughlin                  59.4821 / 108.940 mph
11)       Graham Rahal                       59.9870 / 108.023 mph         
15)       Christian Lundgaard             1:00.0276 / 107.950 mph
23)       Jack Harvey                           1:00.5333 / 107.049 mph

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Qualifying has come to a close here in St Pete with the No. 15 United Rentals car in P11. I thought we had more than that. Coming out of Q1 where we were second, I thought we were going to be very competitive but Q2 we just couldn’t quite get the balance right. It’s so close you know, 2/10ths (of a second) and you advance to the Fast Six, but we didn’t. We have to go back to the drawing board, we have to improve the car a little bit. I’m watching the others on their in-car cameras and stuff, and we have some work to do. We’re going to close in on it. I think as a team everybody was scrambling this morning, scrambling between sessions – so good job just to get all three cars on track. Hopefully we can have a good night, get some rest and get ready to go tomorrow.”

  • FAST FACTS: Will make his 15th Indy car start at the track… His best start here is pole in 2009 and best finish is a win in 2008 in his IndyCar Series debut – both history-making moments at the time as he became the youngest race winner in series history (2008), and youngest pole winner in series history (2009). Both records were eclipsed in 2019 by Colton Herta but he held them for 10 and 11 years, respectively.  Overall, he has earned one top-five and seven top-10 starts here and has two top-five and five top-10 finishes. Year-by-year details are available upon request… Has SIX INDYCAR SERIES wins (2008 – St. Pete street course; 2015 – Fontana Super Speedway, Mid-Ohio road course; 2016 – Texas Super Speedway; 2017 Detroit Race 1, Detroit Race 2) and three poles (2009 – St. Pete street course, Kansas oval; 2017 – Detroit Race 1 street) and his highest series season-ending standing is fourth place in 2015.

CHRISTIAN LUNDGAARD, No. 30 Panasonic / Shield Cleansers Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was a good day throughout.  I think the morning session went pretty well, we made good improvements since yesterday in practice two this morning. We had a slight issue on the car just before qualifying and managed to sort it out and got the car out there. We performed on the (Firestone; primary) blacks but didn’t quite get the performance out of the reds that we were hoping for but considering the rush we were in just before qualifying, I am pretty satisfied with the result.” 

  •  FAST FACTS: The 2022 race will be his second INDYCAR race and first in St. Pete.  In his lone race in the series in 2021 with RLL, he surprised many when he qualified on the second row in fourth place and went on to finish 12th despite a condensed event schedule.

JACK HARVEY, No. 45 Hy-Vee Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Qualifying was not good honestly, I think we had quite a lot of pace that we just didn’t get to show. We got completely screwed with traffic to be honest. A tiny mistake on the entry of Turn 9 in the morning practice and, I mean, that’s the wall. I just grazed it and it was enough to take me off line and into the wall. So I’ll say I’m sorry to the guys of the #45 Hy-Vee Honda that it happened. I don’t crash often or a lot. Honestly, just a really disappointing day across the board, I do think the 45 Hy-Vee Honda has got some speed, we just didn’t get to show it. It was a tough day and it makes tomorrow tough, but we will give it 110 when it matters which will be tomorrow.”

  • FAST FACTS: The 2022 race will be his fifth here and 50th start in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES.  To date, he has started in the top-five two of four races and has two, top-10 finishes with his best being fourth place last year. His first 49 previous starts came with Meyer Shank Racing (MSR), MSR with Arrow SPM or MSR with Andretti Autosport, where he earned a top start of second place three times – including at St. Pete last year – and top finish of third at the Indy GP in 2019.

NEXT UP:  Warm-up will take place from 8:45 – 9:15 a.m. ET tomorrow and the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg will be televised live on NBC beginning at 12 PM ET.