Top Ten Finish for Meyer Shank Racing After Big Comeback in the Sonsio Grand Prix

A nearly flat out 85-lap race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course saw Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) face adversity in the initial laps. Felix Rosenqvist (No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda) fell to last after contact in Turn 1 sent him to the rear of the field, but the Swedish racer went to work and raced his way back to 10th place at the checkers. Teammate Tom Blomqvist had one of his best showings in the early stages of the race before troubles sent him back for a 23rd place finish.

Rosenqvist set a new Meyer Shank Racing team record by finishing in the top 10 for the fourth consecutive race.The Swedish veteran started 10th but got caught in a maelstrom of race cars in the first turn, resulting in Rosenqvist getting pushed off course and dropping 17 spots. Undaunted, he went to work, steadily climbing up the scoring pylon.

Recovering quickly from the first-turn contact, both MSR cars were the first ones to pit on the day, each of them taking on red-walled alternate Firestone tires on Lap 10. Rosenqvist and Blomqvist made good use of the new shoes, using their push-to-pass capabilities to gain positions. Blomqvist climbed all the way to 12th in just 14 laps while Rosenqvist was up to 16th by the time the rest of the field made their first stops.

Blomqvist saw things go awry soon after however, as he incurred a drive-through penalty for a pit-lane violation which ended up costing him a lap to the field. A nearly all-green race unfortunately did not allow Blomqvist to regain his lap which saw him cross the finish line 23rd in the order.

Rosenqvist would keep plugging however, moving up to 14th prior to his final stop with 24 trips left to go around the 2.439-mile road course when the day’s only caution flag changed the tune. Restarting 11th with 16 laps to go, and as the only driver in the top 15 without any push-to-pass remaining, the veteran driver moved up to 10th where he would finish the day.

The finish not only set a new MSR team record, but allowed Rosenqvist to remain fifth in the provisional series point standings after four races.

The race officially opens preparation for 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. Practice will start this Tuesday with qualifying taking place Saturday and Sunday.

Meyer Shank Racing Driver Quotes:

Felix Rosenqvist: “Unfortunately we got completely done at the start after that, we were last, P27. So we came in early, got off the blacks and then did the rest of the race on reds. We had really good pace, I think this is the best car I’ve had in this race even though we ended up doing a good bit of fuel saving. I’m excited to be top ten after being last, but at the same time I’m bummed about the start. I’m definitely curious where we might have finished had we been able to hold our spot at the start. But still super pleased to get our fourth top ten to start the season and be fifth in the points, thats a good start and we will keep building on that.”

Tom Blomqvist: “Obviously we rolled the dice and stopped early to try and undercut guys, which really worked. We made up some good spots and the car was working really well when I was pushing. And then I had to go into a fuel save and then it just kind of spiraled from there. You start to lose brake temperature, you start to lose tire temperature and I just started to make mistakes. And then I broke too late and ran over the line on pit exit and I had to do a drive through, then that kind of ruined our day. I think in the race we could have had a decent result today.”