Green Flag: Gallagher Grand Prix

SEE : Starting lineup

« We did some testing here a month ago which I think helped a lot, » said Rosenqvist, who drives the No.7 Arrow McLaren SP. “We kind of came here with a good starting package, so we knew it was going to be (a race) where we really had to extract everything in qualifying. »

Pole winners on this 14-turn, 2.439-mile permanent road course have won the race five times. There are five races left in this championship race, and every point counts.

Ericsson has finished in the top 10 in 19 of the last 22 races, since winning the first race in Detroit last year. The consistency of his output is one of the reasons his closest opponent, Will Power, describes him as « probably the best runner in the series. »

Ericsson, who leads Power by eight points, was flattered by the comment made last weekend at Iowa Speedway.

“Hearing that from a guy like Will means a lot,” said the rider of the #8 Huski Chocolate Chip Ganassi Racing Honda. “He is obviously one of the best of the last 20 years in INDYCAR and one of the fastest. He’s one of the toughest competitors on the grid, so to hear him say that means a lot. I was happy to hear that. »

According to Trackside Online research, Ericsson has gained 700 points since last year’s 500, which puts him ahead of all drivers. The 30-year-old Swede tops the road and oval course points standings this season, and he could be in the top 5 on road courses too, had he not finished 22nd at Long Beach and failed to finish the racing for the only time this season.

Ericsson leads the standings after six of the twelve races. At the GMR Grand Prix held here in May, Ericsson finished fourth after starting 18th, another example of how he has come through the field on many occasions.

Rosenqvist even joked about it on Friday.

« Every time I talk to him and he’s had a bad qualifying, it’s just like, ‘Oh, I’m just going to drive across the field,' » the pole-holder said.

Ericsson: “One of my strengths has always been my racing skills and my ability to choose the right situations to fight. That’s why we lead the league, because we are very good at transferring between our starts and our arrivals. We have to keep doing that for the last five races. That’s the key, and I think we can do it. »

It starts with a good race on Saturday. He certainly has a long road ahead of him. Others do it too.

In addition to Power, who drives the No. 12 Verizon Penske Chevrolet, four former NTT INDYCAR SERIES champions are in pursuit of the season title. Josef Newgarden (#2 PPG Team Penske Chevrolet) and Scott Dixon (#9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing) are third and fourth respectively, 34 points off the lead. Newgarden have the advantage thanks to their four victories. Alex Palou (Honda n°10 The American Legion Chip Ganassi Racing) is at 36 points. O’Ward, chasing his first championship, is 44 points off the lead, making it the tightest top 6 at this point in the season since the current points structure was implemented.

After today, the NTT INDYCAR SERIES heads to Nashville for the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix on Sunday August 7th.

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