Rahal Letterman Lanigan RacingFirestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg
NTT INDYCAR SERIES
RACE NOTES/QUOTES – Sunday, February 27, 2022
RAHAL FINISHED SEVENTH, LUNDGAARD 11TH AND HARVEY 13TH IN THE FIRESTONE GRAND PRIX OF ST. PETERSBURG
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I would say it was a solid day for us in the No. 15 United Rentals Honda. Obviously, we would have liked to get that top five ahead of Romain and get Rinus (VeeKay). I was just struggling with braking bite in the end of the race there and when I came up the inside on Rinus I just couldn’t get it to stop. I thought the boys did a good job in the pits. It was a consistent day. The balance wasn’t great today, but we battled through it. It’s a good place to start, we’ll go onto Texas from here.”
- FAST FACTS: Made his 15th Indy car start at the track from 11th place, pit for his second stop from third place and ultimately finished seventh in the race… 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 six 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 long race. I think we lost quite a few positions in the beginning of the race at the start, which I wish we could’ve kept. I think we covered some ground on the first pit stop cycle which was good. We ran long on the reds which I was quite happy about. I think the pace on the reds was pretty decent, we perhaps could have gone a little quicker if we had some clean air, but we will never know. It was quite physical in the end. When we pulled out the last set of blacks, we tried to hang on. In the end I think the balance of the car was decent today, we just didn’t have the proper pace that the Penske cars had. So, I think to come home with a result like this is pretty good on our first weekend.”
- FAST FACTS: He started 15th for his second INDYCAR race and first in St. Pete, pit for his second and final stop from fourth place and finished 11th. 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: “I think it was a pretty good day in the end there actually. I think it was a great strategy by the #45 HyVee Honda guys. I kind of made everyone’s life hard with qualifying to start 23rd and finish 13th. With minimal yellows and really tight windows, I thought it was just a great effort by the team. We have good momentum, we will build on it and get to Texas!”
- FAST FACTS: He started 23rd and was the first to stop to replace the less durable alternate Firestone tires on Lap 8 of 100 and was on a three-stop strategy. He made up ground and ultimately finished 13th in his 50th NTT INDYCAR SERIES start. 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: The XPEL 375, Round 2 of the INDYCAR SERIES Season will take place at Texas Motor Speedway on March 20. It will mark the oval racing debut of Lundgaard.