Felix Rosenqvist led the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500 with just eight of the 200 laps remaining, but was forced to abandon a dramatic victory attempt in INDYCAR’s blue-riband event with a late pit stop.
Rosenqvist started the legendary oval race from 14th on the 33-car grid, and overcame an early pitlane speeding penalty to find himself up front as the 500-mile classic entered its closing stages.
Rosenqvist’s Arrow McLaren SP engineers tried to pull off a potentially winning strategy by keeping the #7 Chevrolet out on track without a late, last pit stop, but with no caution in the last 40 laps it eventually became necessary to pit for fuel.
The Swede thus surrendered the lead just eight laps from home, having led a total of 14 tours around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the 2021 edition of the race.
Rosenqvist has led the Indy 500 in each of his three career starts so far.
”We got close, but we took a gamble and in the end, today, it didn’t pay off,” says Felix Rosenqvist. “We were hoping for a late caution that could have possibly seen us home, but it never happened and eventually we had to pit. On top of that, I had an issue with the gearbox early on and then stalled at that last stop, so that was a disappointing end to the day for all of us on the #7 car.”
Rosenqvist was able to rejoin for the last few laps, but by then had lost substantial time and was classified 27th. Up front, Brazil’s Helio Castroneves scored his fourth Indy 500 victory.
“We had a strong car in the pack today and I could see the pace we were having out there in traffic,” Felix Rosenqvist concludes. “It was obviously a bad ending, but I take a lot of positives from the Indy 500 and the Month of May at large. The team has done a great job and this time, we were definitely in the run. We’ll regroup for a few days now and then it’s full speed ahead for the rest of the season.”
The NTT INDYCAR SERIES resumes on June 12-13 for the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix on the Belle Isle street track.
NTT INDYCAR SERIES | Rd. 6
105th Running of the Indianapolis 500
Indianapolis Motor Speedway (USA)
1: Helio Castroneves (BRA), M.Shank, 200 laps
2: Alex Palou (ESP), Ganassi, +0.492s
3: Simon Pagenaud (FRA), Penske, +0.562s
4: Pato O’Ward (MEX), AMSP, +0.940s
5: Ed Carpenter (USA), ECR, +1.242s
27: Felix Rosenqvist (SWE), AMSP, +1 lap
NTT INDYCAR SERIES | After 6/16 races
1: Alex Palou (ESP), Ganassi, 248 p.
2: Scott Dixon (NZL), Ganassi, 212 p.
3: Pato O’Ward (MEX), AMSP, 211 p.
4: Simon Pagenaud (FRA), Penske, 201 p.
5: Rinus VeeKay (NED), ECR, 191 p.
20: Felix Rosenqvist (SWE), AMSP, 82 p.