IndyCar – Romain Grosjean on pole position in St. Petersburg!
Last night Romain Grosjean (Andretti) set the fastest time in qualifying for the IndyCar Grand Prix of St. Petersburg and will start from pole position together with his teammate Colton Herta today. What a good start to the season for Andretti.
The Return of the Phoenix!
Romain Grosjean will start from pole at the end of the afternoon on the streets of St. Petersburg for the first Grand Prix of the IndyCar season after a series of neutralizations the day before, including the retirement of Kyle Kirkwood (AJ.Foyt) and Scott McLaughlin (Penske) in the final stages of qualifying (the fast six that determines the top 6 on the grid). With four cars remaining, Grosjean’s #28 Andretti was fastest thanks to an exceptional lap on fresh tyres. This is his second career pole position after the Indianapolis Road Grand Prix in May 2021.
The Frenchman overtook teammate Colton Herta by four tenths (59.5 vs 59.9) and Mclaren driver Pato O’Ward and was pleased with the work done by the Andretti team this winter. 100 laps are now waiting for him to achieve his first success in the category in a race that promises to be exciting.
Disillusionment for Pagenaud
Fellow French IndyCar driver Simon Pagenaud (Meyer Shank Racing) was not as fortunate as his compatriot. In fact, he didn’t even have a chance to qualify for the second phase of qualifying after making a mistake that earned him retirement early in the session as he improved his time to continue the adventure. It has to be said that he was not helped with the surface of the track being repaved where his wheels caught on the tire wall.
Starting 25th (of 27) he will need to rely on great strategy to push the entire peloton forward.
Press conference with Romain Grosjean
After qualifying, we were able to ask our poleman of the day two short questions.
Romain, we are happy to see you on pole! Let’s talk about the last few minutes of this session: Did it suit you a bit that you ended up with only four cars left to finish the Fast Six? ?
I’ll be honest, I didn’t know there were only four cars left! I left, we had our strategy with new tires for the end, we switched between the 2nd and 3rd sectors and the car was fine. My “delta time on the steering wheel didn’t work so I had no idea what time I was. And the moment I crossed the line I saw “59.5” I thought to myself “this can’t be that bad”.
Ah yes, so suddenly it was done at work! (laughs). But that’s the great thing. How do you feel about tomorrow’s race on a track like this, which is tricky and very narrow?
It won’t be an easy race, we have to work hard. After that we like it and that’s the beauty of the sport. You have to give it your all: it’s hot and humid, the walls are narrow, the track is slippery, it’s windy. That’s the beauty of IndyCar. At the moment we have the best car in qualifying, we hope to have the best for the race.
See you at 18:15 to watch the St. Petersburg Grand Prix, the first round of the 2023 IndyCar Championship, broadcast on Canal+ Sport.