In the round-up: Indianapolis 500 winner Marcus Ericsson admits the circumstances of his IndyCar title defeat last year still rankle with him.
Indy 500 winner rues IndyCar title loss
Chip Ganassi Racing’s Ericsson says he is still “a bit pissed off” about how he missed out on the 2022 IndyCar title after winning last year’s double-points Indianapolis 500.
He spent more than a third of the season as championship leader, and went into the season finale at Laguna Seca as a contender, but dropped to sixth in the final standings after coming eighth in the deciding race.
“I’m still a bit pissed off about the ending of last year because I felt we were having a really strong year, then the last three races or so we just fell off a little bit. That was disappointing,” said Ericsson.
“But it’s given me a lot of motivation to work hard in the off-season to try and be better this year. It’s definitely our goal to try and get that championship this year.”
Ericsson also commented how his annoyance in part stemmed from the condition of the Laguna Seca track surface, which is being repaved for 2023.
“Last year when we were there, we were basically driving rain lines, going outside the normal racing line trying to find grip. I think it was entertaining to watch in some ways because it was very tricky to drive. But the driving experience was not the best I found because it was just so low grip.”
IndyCar reveals new Medical Unit
IndyCar will bring a new mobile medical facility to races this season, with it being used for the first time at this week’s pre-season test at The Thermal Club.
Previously, IndyCar had combined a mobile unit with track facilities, but now will rely more on its own travelling safety infrastructure.
The mobile unit will have “four functional areas, one with two hospital beds” and will contain “portable X-ray machine, a resuscitation cart and assorted orthopaedic care supplies”. From within the mobile unit, doctors and nurses will be able to watch the on-track action via video. IndyCar’s announcement of the new unit also mentioned that the unit will be able to care for all members of the paddock, not just the drivers.
Jenzer to run Barnard in Formula 3
ADAC Formula 4 runner-up Taylor Barnard will race for Jenzer Motorsport in his rookie FIA Formula 3 season this year.
The 18-year-old was announced last month by his F4 team PHM Racing that he would be stepping up to F3, but rather than racing for the German team as he moves up the single-seater ladder he will instead drive for its partner team Jenzer.
Barnard has started 2023 in impressive style with PHM, racing in the Formula Regional Middle East championship. He is currently second in the standings and has already won a race.
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Motor racing links of interest:
Red Bull advisor Marko: Plain text on Saudi rumours and FIA muzzle (RTL)
‘This development was ‘wrong’, explained the 79-year-old. ‘That is clearly wrong. They are responsible citizens who are in the global public eye and who know how and what they have to say,’ says Marko, who also sees this FIA announcement (of restricting political statements) as a consequence of Sebastian Vettel’s protests.’
Mercedes F1 protege Antonelli claims his first Formula Regional win (Formula Scout)
‘Andrea Kimi Antonelli took his first FRegional win in the Middle East championship’s first race in round three at Kuwait Motor Town. He started fourth behind Hyderabad Blackbirds powered by MP’s trio of drivers, who managed to almost entirely ruin their races at the start.’
Inside The Thermal Club: What a $5.2 million membership gets you (and why IndyCar is testing) (Indystar)
‘The grounds of his oasis include 48 guest casitas, three restaurants, a new 1.1-mile go-kart track and a 70-car storage facility for members’ race cars with untold millions worth of Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Porsches, Mercedes and LMP2 race cars inside. Next to it, the heir to the Clorox brand houses his own 40-car Ferrari collection in a vault that would make Batman grin.’
Laurens van Hoepen to race with ART GP in 2023 FREC (ART GP)
‘ART Grand Prix is pleased to announce their continued collaboration with Laurens Van Hoepen for a second year in the FRegional European Championship. The 17-year-old has had his career supported by Formula E champion Nyck de Vries.’
The Airflow Racing team ready for its debut in Formula 4 (ACI Sport)
‘Airflow Racing will make its debut in the world of motorsport this year under the careful guidance of team manager Gianfranco Fantuzzi, who boasts a past in the top flight in his curriculum. At the wheel of one of the single-seaters lined up by the Tuscan team will be the young Guido Luchetti.’
Rodin Carlin confirms Callum Voisin’s GB3 return in 2023 (GB3)
‘Rodin Carlin has confirmed that Callum Voisin will return to the rebranded team for the 2023 GB3 Championship. Voisin made a big impression in his debut single-seater season with the team in 2022 and now looks to capitalise on his experience to challenge for the championship title.’
Blomqvist keeps eye on IndyCar during impressive rise: ‘I would love to give it a go’ (NBC Sports)
‘He ripped off a monster ‘one and done’ pole-winning lap to beat the clock in qualifying for the Daytona 24 Hours. During the race, Blomqvist was as dominant in his first stint as his last in the ARX-06 while taking the chequered flag.’
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Happy birthday to Sharan!
On this day in motorsport
- 25 years ago today Nigel Mansell finished 12th in a one-off appearance in the Chamonix 24 Hours ice race, in a Ford Escort shared with rally champion Ari Vatanen