2023 Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg Arrow McLaren Race Report

#5: Pato O’Ward, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

Streets of St. Petersburg

Race Date: Sunday, March 5

Round: 1/17

Total laps: 100 Laps

Total race distance: 180 miles/289.68 km

Length: 1.8 miles/2.90 km

Number of turns: 14

Pato O’Ward, No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

Starting Position: 3rd

Finishing Position: 2nd

Championship position: 2nd, 41 points

“We did everything right today; it’s just always something. The team deserved that. Dallas is next. We’ll fight for that one. Compared to where we were last year here, we took a massive step. We gave that one away. We can’t have that happen anymore. I know we’re second, though.”

Alexander Rossi, No. 7 VELO Arrow McLaren Chevrolet 

Starting Position: 12th

Finishing Position: 4th

Championship position: 4th, 32 points

“It was a day about maximizing what we had. We got lucky with some cars going out or making mistakes. Ultimately, the team did a really good job. I think we were just one second behind all weekend. But first time out with the guys and girls, these are the days you need when you don’t quite have the ultimate pace. Obviously, it was a shame what happened to Felix at the start, but I think we had two really good cars – Pato showed that, almost had the win. All in all, a really strong start, and we’ll take this positive momentum to Texas.”

Felix Rosenqvist, No. 6  NTT DATA Arrow McLaren Chevrolet 

Starting Position: 8th

Finishing Position: 19th

Championship position: 19th, 11 points

”It was a tough day. We had such a good weekend, then that second corner I’m side by side with Dixon and he didn’t see me in the mirror. The wall just appeared in front of me and I had nowhere to go, and that was it. It’s unfortunate. But we actually got back out there, the team did a hell of a job to put the car back together. I think we did 30-40 laps and got us up in P19. It’s not much, but it’s actually a lot considering we were back in the garage for half an hour. We’ll take it, put the rest in the trash and move on.”

Gavin Ward, Race Director, Arrow McLaren

“Obviously, a little bit heartbreaking when you think you’re going to win a race and it doesn’t quite go your way at the end, but that’s motor racing. Overall, you take the big picture view here. We came in here wanting to get some good points on the board. It’s a long season, and the key to the season is consistency and two of our cars got right up there in the top four, so have to be super happy with that. Felix, his crew dug deep and got that car back out there to gain some extra points and spots. I’m proud of those guys. Rossi has a lot of new people on his car, his first race with the team. His finish is what we need to be doing to give him a chance for the championship. Pato had a great car all weekend and had a strong race, but we have a lot we need to look at on the end of the race there. Onwards to Texas where we were strong last year and we hope to be even stronger this year.”