Sunday, March 13, 2016

Reflections From The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, After 195 Days Of ?

Reflections From The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, After 195 Days Of ?
(Championship Racing Radio Post Race Review With Josh Farmer & Edmund Jenks )

It's been 195 days since the Verizon IndyCar Dallaras have taken to a racing surface in anger as the drivers, teams, and cars took to the temporary street course track at Saint Petersburg for the first race of this 2016 season - The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, March 13, 2016

So many story lines - Will Power, Oriol Servia, Rookies (Conor Daly, Spencer Pigot, Alexander Rossi, & Max Chilton), Simon Pagenaud - how'd they do?, Marco Andretti and Andretti Autosport's Carlos Munoz effect on the race and final order at finish (RHR Podium) ... WOW, great race for the first one of the year after a long dry spell since the Verizon IndyCar Dallaras have taken to a racing surface in anger.

This race, including rookies, may have the best crop of drivers to start a competitive racing season in the history of IndyCar. Easily one of the most competent based upon accomplishment and resume.

The rookie field alone has a series champion - Pigot, one with Indy 500 plus four other 2015 season races under his racing royalty belt - Daly, and two that are coming in with Formula 1 experience - Rossi & Chilton.

Race start of the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Image Credit: VICS

The race started cleanly with two exceptions. Takuma Sato got a flat tire and James Hinchcliffe went off the course ... also with a flat tire. It was revealed in the post race interviews that Josef Newgarden had plenty to do with the Mayor's problems as well as his own which had him, Newgarden, finish 47 laps off of the race total.

The biggest movers at the start were Josef Newgarden (with the punt of Hinchcliffe) and Marco Andretti.

Simon Pagenaud took the lead from pole position followed by teammates Helio Castroneves and Juan Pablo Montoya.

By Lap 10, Helio's front tires began to lose grip giving an opening for JPM to pass at the beginning of the lap at the end of the front straight.

About Helio's early first pit-stop:
Edmund Jenks retweeted
Timothy Burke @bubbaprog
typical Florida driver

<<< VIDEO >>>

Lap 22 - RHR chops across Luca Flillippe and causes carbon fiber damage on Luca's Dallara.

Lap 33 - JPM gains to 1.5 seconds behind after first pitstops.

Lap 46 - Marco Andretti tries to follow RHR at the end of the front straight in a pass of Luca --- spins with contact to rear ... stalls and creates a FCY.

Lap 48 the field pits when the pits become open --- Pagenaud slides to a stop in the pit box but remains within limits ... beats JPM back out on track.

TrendNode @trendnodecom
‪#‎IndyCar‬ is now trending in 5 countries.

#‎IndyCar‬ is now trending in 5 countries. Image Credit: TrendNode

Aaron Bearden @AaronBearden93
. @ConorDaly22 is sitting pretty after this yellow. He had just pitted laps earlier and inherits the lead. #IndyCar #FirestoneGP

Trend Topics USA @TrendTopicsUSA
San Jose
1 #DaylightSavingTime
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4 #IndyCar
5 #SelectionSunday
6 Ivory Coast

Image Credit: Trend Topics

Restart Lap 57 - Big stoppage at Turn 4 when Rahal got booted by Carlos Munoz stacking up 9 cars - Front Wings between Rahal and Servia touch with many rear end collisions behind

Nathan Evans on Twitter
“Calamity corner. #indycar”

<<< VIDEO >>>

Edmund Jenks retweeted
Eric Smith @Eric_RaceReview
Officially 9 cars listed in that Turn 4 crash on Lap 56: 98, 15, 16, 83, 41, 5, 15, 11, 12 ‪#‎IndyCar‬ #‎FirestoneGP‬

Cars/Drivers as follows; 98 - Alexander Rossi, 15 - Graham Rahal, 16 - Spencer Pigot, 83 - Charlie Kimball, 41 - Jack Hawksworth, 5 - James Hinchcliffe, 15 - Luca Filippi, 11 - Josef Newgarden, & 12 - Oriol Servia.

Daly loses lead on restart Lap 63 to JPM - Lap 65 end of straight, Helio passes Dixon at end of straight.

Munoz gets penalty for avoidable contact in large accident.

RHR passes Helio for Podium on Lap 107

If JPM wins, it will be the first back-to-back wins at St. Pete since Helio did it in 2006-2007

Juan Pablo Montoya starts the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season the same way he started the 2015 VICS season ... with a win on the streets of St. Petersburg. Image Credit: VICS

Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg Race Results (Highlights Video Here)

Click HERE to view and download the official results from the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Results Sunday of the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg Verizon IndyCar Series event on the 1.8-mile St. Petersburg street circuit, with order of finish, starting position in parentheses, driver, chassis-engine, laps completed and reason out (if any):

1.  (3) Juan Pablo Montoya, Chevrolet, 110, Running
2.  (1) Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, 110, Running
3.  (5) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Honda, 110, Running
4.  (2) Helio Castroneves, Chevrolet, 110, Running
5.  (17) Mikhail Aleshin, Honda, 110, Running
6.  (10) Takuma Sato, Honda, 110, Running
7.  (4) Scott Dixon, Chevrolet, 110, Running
8.  (12) Carlos Munoz, Honda, 110, Running
9.  (19) Tony Kanaan, Chevrolet, 110, Running
10.  (13) Charlie Kimball, Chevrolet, 109, Contact
11.  (9) Jack Hawksworth, Honda, 109, Running
12.  (18) Alexander Rossi, Honda, 109, Running
13.  (20) Conor Daly, Honda, 109, Running
14.  (21) Spencer Pigot, Honda, 109, Running
15.  (14) Marco Andretti, Honda, 109, Running
16.  (6) Graham Rahal, Honda, 109, Running
17.  (16) Max Chilton, Chevrolet, 109, Running
18.  (22) Oriol Servia, Chevrolet, 109, Running
19.  (8) James Hinchcliffe, Honda, 109, Running
20.  (15) Luca Filippi, Honda, 108, Running
21.  (7) Sebastien Bourdais, Chevrolet, 87, Contact
22.  (11) Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 47, Electrical                             

Race Statistics
Winner's average speed:   89.006 mph
Time of Race: 02:13:28.4650
Margin of victory: 2.3306 seconds
Cautions:  2 for 16 laps
Lead changes: 4 among 4 drivers

Lap Leaders:
Pagenaud 1 - 48
Daly 49 - 63
Montoya 64 - 81
Hunter-Reay 82-84
Montoya 85 - 110

Verizon IndyCar Series Point Standings: Montoya 51, Pagenaud 43, Hunter-Reay 36, Castroneves 32, Aleshin 30, Sato 28, Dixon 26, Munoz 24, Kanaan 22, Kimball 20.
[ht: Verizon IndyCar Series]

... notes from The EDJE

TAGS: Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, St. Pete, The EDJE, Josh Farmer, Championship Racing Radio, Verizon IndyCar Series, VICS, #indycar, Motorsports Journal

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