Felix Rosenqvist Takes Season-High Fourth For Meyer Shank Racing in Alabama

Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) has put together the best start of its eight years of NTT INDYCAR SERIES competition and isn’t showing any signs of slowing after Felix Rosenqvist (No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda) finished a strong fourth in Sunday’s Children’s of Alabama Indy Grand Prix at Barber Motorsports Park.

Teammate Tom Blomqvist (No. 66 AutoNation / Arctic Wolf Honda) continued to make strides as he started the race a career-best 12th and came home with a 19th place finish.

The fourth place finish was the best of the young season for Rosenqvist and moved him up to fifth in the provisional INDYCAR SERIES point standings, just 13 points behind the series leader. Rosenqvist is currently the only driver in the series to finish in the top five in all of the 2024 season races thus far.

The top-10 finish also marked the first time since joining the series that MSR has started the season with three consecutive top-10 finishes and is the first time since 2021 that the team has carded three straight top-10 results.

The 90-lap race saw the field split into a pair of strategies from the drop of the green flag, with some committing to a three-stop plan that allowed them to run at full speed while others – including the two MSR cars – went with a two-stop strategy that would force drivers to conserve fuel to complete the full race distance.

Starting fifth, Rosenqvist ran with the top group of two-stoppers all day, keeping a podium finish in sight as the strategies played out. He led a lap for the second time in the year’s three races during the first cycle of stops while teammate Blomqvist, who started a career-best 12th, was able to maintain his strategy despite losing positions in the first stint.

Things appeared to be playing out in MSR’s favor in the second half of the race, but a caution flag with 35 laps to go provided an opportunity for the three-stop cars to stay out and run harder as the two-stop cars had to pit for fuel, dropping Rosenqvist back to 12th on the restart.

Rosenqvist got back into the top-five as pit stops cycled through and appeared destined for that fifth spot when the fourth and final caution of the day came out with five laps to go. The team’s tire choices throughout the day left the Swedish driver on the softer Firestone tires on the restart while fourth-placed Alex Palou – who was on the same strategy as Rosenqvist – was on the harder black-walled shoes.

Rosenqvist made that decision pay off on the Lap 89 restart as he got a good run on the No. 10 car and moved into fourth, where he would stay for the final two trips around the Barber circuit.

Blomqvist continued to tick another INDCAR event off in his Rookie season in the series. Despite dealing with balance issues during the 90-lap race, he finished on the lead lap in 19th.

MSR will have a week to the plan before heading to Indianapolis for the Month of May, which starts with the May 11 Sonsio Grand Prix on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. The Saturday race will be followed by the May 26 Indianapolis 500, which will see the team expanded to three cars as MSR minority owner Helio Castroneves attempts to win his record fifth Memorial Day Classic.

Meyer Shank Racing Driver Quotes:

Felix Rosenqvist: “P4, I’d say we’d take that any day. We didn’t feel quick initially and we had some challenges early on in the weekend, but after that we kept improving and improving. I think our strongest part of the weekend was the race. We were on a massive fuel save and pretty much everyone around us tried to do a three-stopper, so it was hard to keep everyone behind. I’m happy we stuck to that strategy because it gave us a couple of spots in the end, even if we were not on the winning strategy. We made the most out of it and a lot of points on a weekend where we weren’t the favorite.”

Tom Blomqvist: “This was a really tough race for us. I was struggling to get grip the whole race so it was difficult to handle. It’s another race under my belt and we’ll just continue to keep learning each weekend.”