GRAND PRIX OF MID-OHIO (AUGUST 2)
After qualifying 15th for the start of Sunday’s Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio due to technical problems on Friday and Saturday morning, Simon Pagenaud was third across the line to claim a footing on podium. The Frenchman ended up as his team’s best-placed finisher and as the highest-ranking Chevrolet driver. It was also his best result of the year after the same position at May’s Detroit Grand Prix. The early part of the race saw Simon benefit from a judicious strategy to move up the order and appear in fifth spot by Lap 33. He then succeeded in holding his position in the chasing pack before pitting just before the pit-lane was closed after Sage Karam’s spin on Lap 65. While the front-runners – including his own team-mates Juan Pablo Montoya, Helio Castroneves and Will Power – were compelled to wait until the pit-lane entry re-opened to make their stops, Simon found himself at the race’s sharp end and a superb final run allowed him to clinch his third straight podium finish at Mid-Ohio. The result means the Frenchman is still 10th in the championship’s provisional standings and more motivated than ever to win the last two rounds of the 2015 IndyCar Series. They will be at the Pocono oval, Pennsylvania, on August 23, and at Sonoma Raceway’s conventional race track in California, on August 30.
Simon Pagenaud: “It was quite a hard weekend for us, so I would like say a big ‘bravo’ to my guys and to the Chevy Team. We had a small problem on Friday and Saturday morning, and we had to fit a fresh engine. The replacement worked very well, though, and we were back in the game. It’s incredible that we managed to bounce back from our worst qualifying session of the year to a podium finish. It’s sometimes amazing to see how things pan out. Until now, we have managed to qualify well without really being able to take advantage of that in the race. This time, it all worked out. The team’s strategy was really good and it’s nice to have a little good luck every now and again. We haven’t had much this season. But it was a great day and we were back on the podium!”
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