Rahal Letterman Lanigan RacingAcura Grand Prix of Long Beach
Round 3 of 17 in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES
PRACTICE NOTES/QUOTES – Friday, April 8, 2022
MULTIPLE RED FLAGS CALLED FOR AN EVENTFUL PRACTICE SESSION FOR OPENING DAY OF THE ACURA GRAND PRIX OF LONG BEACH
1) Simon Pagenaud 1:07.1991 / 105.430 mph
13) Graham Rahal 1:08.1737 / 103.923 mph
17) Jack Harvey 1:08.5799 / 103.307 mph
21) Christian Lundgaard 1:08.7736 / 103.016 mph
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Quartz Motor Oil Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “The Quartz Motor Oil Honda felt pretty good today. We obviously ended up 13th which isn’t great but I think it’s super close. A lot of guys, I think several, put new tires on there in the end. We wanted to keep our slicks freshies for tomorrow. I think we’re competitive, I think we’re still struggling with what we always are which is getting the car to turn and yet keep the rear solid enough. Coming out of where he did before, I know Jack is much more familiar with the car more stable and turns better as well – we got to work towards that, we have to figure out how to get there to make these cars a little quicker. We will put all of our heads together tonight and try to find a little bit more for tomorrow. We will see what happens.
- FAST FACTS: Will be his 15th Champ/Indy car race here and 16th overall. His best IndyCar start here is fifth in 2007 and best finish is second place in 2013. In 2021, he ran as high as second place two times and led four laps by utilizing an alternate strategy after starting 19th but the timing of a caution for contact between teammate Askew and Daly while he was on his in-lap for his final pit stop dropped him to 20th. He came back to finish 16th…. A recap of results is available upon request… He also competed in the 2006 Champ Car Atlantic Series race here… 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. He is currently ranked 12th in series point standings with 34 points.
CHRISTIAN LUNDGAARD, No. 30 Shield Cleansers Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “The first session in Long Beach is done. It was not quite the session for us that we wanted really. I think I’m struggling at the moment a bit to understand where we are losing the time because I don’t get much information on track and obviously as a rookie it’s quite difficult to know where to go faster if you don’t have the experience yet. I’m a little disappointed in that but I’m sure we will come back stronger for P2 tomorrow. Now we have the data from Graham and Jack. I haven’t seen lap times, sectors, and data yet so it will be interesting to see where we can improve and then take it from there. We’re off to a slow start once again which is not what I expected, so we will see tomorrow.”
- FAST FACTS: The 2022 race will be his fourth INDYCAR race and first in Long Beach. He is the highest rookie in the points standings with a rank of 15th with 30 points.
JACK HARVEY, No. 45 Hy-Vee Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “We have a little bit of work to do probably to be one of the faster cars but honestly, I think today I am just happy that we were able to drive, we got cleared, and absolutely just love the track. I’m pretty excited for the rest of our weekend. I think the weather is going to be quite a bit different tomorrow, so we’ll just take it as it comes. I think it’s an okay start for the #45 Hy-Vee Honda. We’ll work on it tonight and get ready for tomorrow.”
- FAST FACTS: He has competed in three INDYCAR races there with his best finish of seventh place coming last year after he led one lap. He also has experience starting up front after having won pole in one of this two Indy Lights races at the track in 2015. He is ranked 26th in series point standings with 17 points after missing the Texas race.
3 POLES, 6 PODIUMS FOR RLL IN 21 INDY CAR RACES AT LONG BEACH: The 2022 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach (AGPLB) marks the 22nd time for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) to compete in the event. Although the team didn’t compete in Indy car races here from 2004-2011 while they fielded a fulltime entry in the Indy Racing League (2004-2008), they did compete in the 2003 and 2004 Atlantic races with Danica Patrick and in the 2007 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) race. In total, the team has won three poles (Herta 1998, Vasser 2002, Jourdain, Jr. 2003); made five front row starts including an all-Team Rahal front row in 1998 (2nd – Rahal 1998, Brack 2001); earned their best finish of second place four times (Rahal 1992-1993, Vasser 2002, G. Rahal 2013) and earned six podiums here (2nd – Rahal 1992-1993, Vasser 2002 & G. Rahal 2013; 3rd – Herta 1998-1999). From 2009-2019, the team competed on the streets of Long Beach in the GTLM class of the ALMS/IMSA with BMW Team RLL and as finished on the podium each year but 2016-2019 although they started from pole in 2016 and led all three of those races. The venue is still the most successful for the team on the current IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship schedule with wins in 2011, 2013 and 2015, eight podium finishes and five poles in 11 years. BMW M Team RLL has a one-car entry in the GTD Pro Class of IMSA and is competing here this weekend.
NEXT UP: Practice will take place Saturday morning from 8:45-9:45 a.m. PDT and qualifying will take place from 12:05-1:20 PM PDT. Peacock will begin live coverage of qualifying at 3 p.m. EDT Saturday. Timing and Scoring information is available for all sessions from www.indycar.com. The Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will be televised live on NBC Sports beginning at 3:00 p.m. ET Sunday, April 10.